Over the past several years, as the popularity of Battlestar Galactica grew, composer Bear McCreary made a quick transition from a promising television composer to an all-out rock star of music composition. As evidenced by the final track on this dual soundtrack for The Plan and Razor – a live version of “Apocalypse (Theme from ‘The Plan’)” – in which boisterous fans can be heard repeatedly chanting “So Say We All!” before the hard rock guitar riffs of the tune start in, McCreary has amassed a following so dedicated that they will pack music venues to hear him kick out their favorite Battlestar Galactica tracks. As other composers can attest to, this is not exactly a common place for a television composer to find himself.

But after composing a massive amount of music for BSG over the past five years, McCreary has earned rave reviews from music, film, and television critics, as well as the BSG’s fan base. Discussing his work on the series (and this final album in particular) , McCreary says he’s “…proud of the collections that La La Land Records and NBC Universal have been able to bring to you, and thrilled that this final ‘Galactica’ album is at last available, for it represents the conclusion of a significant chapter of my life.” And true to form, this album is no lightweight collection of music intended to ride the coattails of previous success. With almost 70 minutes of music spread over 19 tracks, this is more than a full-length sampling of music from two BSG specials.

Though each special is given equal time, the tracks are interspersed throughout the album (not grouped separately). Depending on how you look at it, this is either a brilliant ordering (since the stories are technically unfolding at the same time) or an annoying confusion (since they are two separate stories). The music included here makes strong use of past character and concept themes and manages to expand on a few. Tracks like the gently thoughtful “Kendra’s Memories” delve into the more emotional side of McCreary’s arsenal while the variations on “Apocalypse” (including “Apocalypse, Pt. I” and “Apocalypse, Pt. II”) display more of the suspenseful action sequences McCreary is capable of. Overall, this is definitely an amazing selection of music from a powerful composer with many years ahead of him.

Also check out my reviews of McCreary’s scores for BSG Season 3 and BSG Season 4

Zach’s Rating: A
Perfect For: Battlestar Galactica completists
Stay Away if: You’re soooooo over it

To purchase the soundtrack for The Plan/Razor, visit Amazon

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