Babylon 5: In The Beginning
Christopher Franke

Review

First we had Babylon 5, the first soundtrack of music drawn from the first two seasons of the greatest science fiction television series. Then we had Messages of Earth that did the same thing for the second and third seasons. Following the clamour for the entire score for episodes (rather than the suites from the previous two releases) The Cult was released. Not a single CD, but a series of CDs (each of which contained the entire score for a single episode). They are good, but after a while you have heard the music before. There are beautiful moments, but Babylon 5 has a tone and that is what gets repeated over and over again. The best stuff from the first series had already been interspersed into the first two compilations.

So what do you do when you want the entire score for an episode of the greatest television series without being all mixed up? You get In The Beginning, possible Franke's best score to date. It is so much more refreshing than some of his previous work, maybe it has something to do with being able to work on a larger scale. It is much bigger and grandiose than previous releases in The Cult series. A lot of the familiar tunes are there: the theme from the "Battle of the Line" and the mystical Mimbari melodies to name two. But there is also some new themes such as the strangely Celtic tune that kicks off the sixth tracks. Which brings me to my only complaint. This release suffers from the same problems as the second and third set of episodic CDs. The acts are presented as single tracks, rather than having a tracks for each part of each act. This makes it hard to focus in on a particular piece of music that you want. In the end you have to either find a CD player with a program by time feature, or just use the tracks as great background music.

Straczynski asked Franke to "break our hearts". He did just that.

Track Listing and Notes

  1. Track One (9:34)
    1. Opening (2:03) - danger ~ quiet ~ danger ~ peaceful ~ revelation
    2. It Began 35 Earth Years Ago (1:48) - beginnings
    3. Londo on Earth (2:12) - exploration
    4. Meet The Grey Council (2:45) - reverence (religious) ~ grand
    5. Londo's Terrible Truth (0:48) - introspections
  2. Track Two (11:18)
    1. Londo Remembers (0:55) - quiet
    2. Grey Council In Session (1:43) - reverence
    3. Decision To Go (1:00) - undercurrent
    4. Dukhat & Kosh (0:40) - reverence
    5. Cargo Arrival (0:43) - discovery
    6. Prometheus On Course (1:08) - preparation for battle
    7. Delenn Inducted (0:22) - incidental
    8. Earth Attack (5:04) - tension ~ confrontation
  3. Track Three (5:47)
    1. Minbari Attack (0:44) - fight
    2. Troop Assembly (1:40) - preparations
    3. I'll See You Soon (0:35) - incidental
    4. Delenn In Her Quarters (0:39) - rage/sadness
    5. Delenn Meets Kosh (1:36) - sad
    6. The Human Allies (0:45) - strange
  4. Track Four (6:42)
    1. Franklin In Medlab (0:24) - quiet
    2. Franklin Arrested (1:37) - danger
    3. Minbari Attack (2:20) - ambush ~ fight
    4. Sheridan's Plan (2:21) - tension
  5. Track Five (8:05)
    1. Destroy The Black Star (2:08) - before the storm
    2. Londo About Interception (1:13) - confrontation
    3. Centauri Attack (1:58) - undercurrent
    4. Captured And Released (2:46) - tension
  6. Track Six (15:42)
    1. The War (3:22) - sad ~ lament
    2. President's Call (1:43) - undercurrent
    3. The Battle Of The Line (5:34) - battle
    4. Valen's Reincarnation (0:51) - incidental
    5. Our Last Best Hope For Peace (0:54) - revelation
    6. The Story Is Never Over (2:43) - quiet
    7. End Credits (0:47) - ending

Total Running Time: 57:10


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Babylon 5: In The Beginning © 1998 Warner-Tamerlane Publ. Corp. (BMI).