I’ve been listening to Michael Giacchino’s score for the new Star Trek movie (Amazon.ca, Amazon.com, iTunes). It’s quite distinct from previous Trek movie scores by, say, Jerry Goldsmith or James Horner. The tone seems lighter, the tempo much faster, than those other scores; and with cues redolent of the 1960s (I was reminded of Elmer Bernstein at a couple of points), the music seems a throwback to the music of the original series. Even Fred Steiner’s cues for “The Corbomite Maneuver” or “Balance of Terror,” looped again and again for ominous enemies in subsequent episodes, had a briskness to them, to say nothing of the fluffy fun inherent in Jerry Fielding’s music for “The Trouble with Tribbles.” I quite liked it — a good fit for this less ponderous and less earnest reinvention of Star Trek.
Even if you haven’t heard of Giacchino, you’ve probably heard his work. He also scored a few Pixar movies: his score for The Incredibles was, I thought, very good, and he’s also done Ratatouille and Up.