The Batman: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack by Michael Giacchino (CD review).

April 4, 2022 | By | Reply More

There has been a lot of Batman films over the years. Some were better than others but regardless of their cinematic qualities they all had a soundtrack. The same is true of the 2022 incarnation ‘The Batman’ staring Robert Pattinson. This soundtrack is composed by Michael Giacchino who has many awards an achievements during a distinguished career.

I’ve reviewed two other films Giacchino composed for, ‘War For The Planet Of The Apes’ and ‘Spider-Man: Homecoming’, which I have reviewed in the past. What I will say is that neither of those films soundtracks prepared me for this one. It’s rather different is all I will say at this point.

The two CDs contain a total of 29 tracks which adds up to provide you with 1 hour and 56 minutes of audio experience. Before you get to the actual sound you will be taken by the names of the tracks which are unusual. It starts with track 2 ‘Mayoral Ducting’ and includes other gems such as ‘Crossing The Feline’ and ‘Penguin Of Guilt’. Of course, they could be related to on-screen activities but not having seen the film I’m somewhat in the dark so to speak.

While Giacchino has orchestrated some parts of the soundtrack, there are passages which, to me, are very much sound effects. The blending of the two approaches is very good. What some people might find a challenge though is the tone of the soundtrack. It is rather gothic, dark and unsettling in the most part.

Take track 10 ‘Escaped Crusader’, for example. It starts quietly with a slow tempo before ramping up the volume and tempo into what must be a chase. A chase filled with danger and hidden peril by the sound of it. This leads into track 11 ‘Penguin Of Guilt’ which isn’t going to cheer you up. There’s not a lot of happiness in Gotham if this album is a true reflection.

It does seem to me that Giacchino likes his big bass drum. It has featured in the other soundtracks I have reviewed and gets a good bashing in this one to. I have no doubt it adds to the on screen action but can become a bit wearying after a time. Track 12 ‘Highway To The Anger Zone’ at 5 minutes and 20 seconds is a good example of this. After the first 3 minutes, I just wanted it to end. Thankfully it did.

There are parts of some tracks which are very quiet. This inevitably gets you concentrating to pick out all the details but you have to be prepared for sudden changes in volume and tempo. They sneak up on you in some tracks.

The problem I have with this soundtrack is that there isn’t one uplifting track. It ends with track 29 ‘Sonata In Darkness’ which is about as dark and bleak as you can get. At 12 minutes and 11 seconds, it is also the longest track on the album. Admittedly, it starts with a nice piano introduction but by 1 minute and 30 seconds the dark overtones start to creep in. As it is the last track I can only assume that the credits are rolling. There must be hundreds of people in the credits.

Like other soundtracks from action films that I have reviewed, it is sometimes hard to see what the attraction is. There is no doubt about Michael Giacchino’s skill in composing a superb movie soundtrack. It’s just that as a standalone piece of work not many of them would be on the list of things I would put on to listen to either as background music or as the main event.

If you are that type of person who actively listens to movie soundtracks then you will be please to note that is also available on vinyl, although it spans three disks on that media. You will also have to hunt for one as I’ve only seen it listed in the USA.

Andy Whitaker

April 2022

(pub: Watertower Music, 2022. 2 CDs 29 tracks 126 minutes. Price: £21.00 (UK), $17.00 (US). ASIN: B09TFVBKNH)

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Track listing:-

DISK # 1

01 Can’t Fight City Halloween

02 Mayoral Ducting

03 It’s Raining Vengeance

04 Don’t Be Voyeur With Me

05 Crossing The Feline

06 Gannika Girl

07 Moving In For The Gil

08 Funeral And Far Between

09 Collar Id

10 Escaped Crusader

11 Penguin Of Guilt

12 Highway To The Anger Zone

13 World’s Worst Translator

14 Riddles, Riddles Everywhere

15 Meow And You And Everyone We Know

16 For All Your Pennyworth

17 Are You A Kenzie Or A Can’t-Zie_

Disk # 2

18 An Im-Purr-Fect Murder

19 The Great Pumpkin Pie

20 Hoarding School

21 A Flood Of Terrors

22 A Bat In The Rafters, Pt. 1

23 A Bat In The Rafters, Pt. 2

24 The Bat’s True Calling

25 All’s Well That Ends Farewell

26 The Batman

27 Catwoman

28 The Riddler (from ‘The Batman’)

29 Sonata In Darkness

Category: MEDIA, Music/Audio

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About AndyWhitaker

I live in deepest darkest Essex where I enjoy photography, real ales, walking my dog, cooking and a really good book. I own an e-book reader which goes with me everywhere but still enjoy the traditional paper based varieties.

My oriental studies have earned me a black belt in Suduko and I'm considered a master in deadly Bonsai (there are very few survivors).

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