More music to make you feel epic – X-Men: The Movie

X-Men SoundtrackThat’s right…I have more music suggestions that will make you feel as though your normal commute is much more exciting than it actually is!

A movie score that I feel gets overlooked too often is the score to the first X-Men movie. I’ve heard several people scoff at Michael Kamen’s compositions for this film (he’s probably best known for the scores to films such as “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves”, “Highlander”, “Mr. Holland’s Opus” and also for the orchestral side to the Metallica S&M concert) but even if you are one of those people, I urge you to listen to the score once again, this time without the distraction of the movie.

The first track on the album, “Death Camp” sets the tone for the rest of the music, and you can feel the build and tension in the music leading up to the sudden quiet. The music from the opening credits, however, is found later on the album in the track called “Cerebro”. I’m personally a huge fan of that particular track with its sweeping strings that make me want to fly down the freeway in a manner reminiscent of the film’s opening credit sequence.

Other tracks such as “Ambush” and “Museum Fight” help to provide that feeling of action and excitement without feeling as cliché as other movie scores. These tracks maintain a slightly different feel that only heightens the experience of watching a superhero movie. Not to mention, cleaning house and listening to these track make you feel like you’ll actually win the battle against your dust bunnies.

There is one track on the album that is easily my favorite and I can listen to on repeat endlessly. “Logan and Rogue” is the final track on the score and from the moment I first heard the melody in the theater (the scene where Logan finally gets to Rogue and lifts up her limp form) I was captivated. Easily the most memorable piece of music from the movie, it’s replayed in its entirety during the end credits of the film. Every time I hear this piece I feel like I want to cry and soar at the same time. Don’t ask me how it manages to produce that feeling, but listen to it with your eyes closed and see what you think. Even those who turn up their noses and call Kamen’s score to X-Men campy and terrible often have nothing but good things to say about this particular track.

From the melodic and sad tones of the strings in the track “Logan and Rogue” to the forceful use of the same instruments in ” Ambush”, Michael Kamen shows off his ability to create an epic movie score without crossing the line into “too cheesy”. HIs score makes you feel as though it could still be applied to your own life’s soundtrack. Which is what makes it so wonderful in my opinion.

For this Elf, out of all 4 X-Men films, the score to the first is easily the most memorable. My second favorite is the score to the third movie but Kamen’s work on the music for the first film is brilliant. When the movie came out in theaters I happened to be working at one during the film’s run and would often sneak into the theater at the end of the movie just to close my eyes and listen to the music from the “Logan and Rogue” moment through the end of the credits.

Even if you think that Kamen’s work is cheesy or not epic enough for X-Men, give it a listen without the film. Let me know what you think!