Just after releasing the soundtrack that vividly brought to life the third season of the epic medieval fantasy world of dragons and magic that is Game of Thrones
, Ramin Djawadi’s latest collection of compositions score a film in the completely opposite realm of futuristic sci-fi, Pacific Rim
, in which humanity’s survival depends on the forces of enormous mecha “Jaegers” built to defeat the giant monsters, “Kaiju.” Having previously composed the score for the first Iron Man
, Djawadi has had prior experience in creating themes for technologically advanced robot battle suits, and much like the Iron Man
soundtrack, Pacific Rim
’s score is very guitar-driven and fittingly for Pacific Rim
, opts for a tone that’s just plain fun and kickass while remaining thrilling. There aren’t too many action films anymore whose soundtracks are concerned with trying anything else but being gripping and grim at an overtly constant rate, but Djawadi makes the right move of not taking it too seriously with the musical cues he constructs. There’s moments of captivating tension here as any film with action sequences should have, but those moments feel all the more intense since there’s a concise supply of them.
Tom Morello also works with Djawadi for the first time since Iron Man
’s soundtrack and just as he did with that score, brings his signature brand of riffing funk swagger to enhance the guitar assault on a good share of cuts, though with the difference this time around being that this music is on a much more grandiose scale than Iron Man
was. That grand-scale feeling makes for very expansive music that has plenty of room to fit massive battles between mecha and Kaiju, and Djawadi makes sure to fill that space with a plentiful arsenal of styles such as industrial, orchestral, and heavy metal. Glitching synthesizers pound and echo as guitar riffs pummel like the hulking masses of machinery in the film, but among the soundtrack’s 25 tracks there’s just as much urgency as there is confidence and triumph. There’s even some brief cues of quirkiness and traces of despair and defeat. To say the least, Djawadi made sure to cover all bases here in terms of mood and emotions, and even without Morello’s assistance on the guitar fronts he proves to be perfectly capable of banging out grooving rhythms with plenty of attitude and drive.
’s music is as enjoyable as the film for many of the same reasons. Its biggest concern is being awesome on a scale of awe, and sporting just as much style as substance. It’s the first action movie score in a while to primarily and proudly boast themes that electrify without feeling the need to brood, and one can only hope that other composers will follow suit.