Soundtrack Review: Once Upon A Time (2012)

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Once Upon A Time Soundtrack Review: This is a review of the television score Once Upon A Time by Mark Isham.

“This score is dramatic, romantic, epic and just pure bliss for the ears from start to finish.”

Once Upon A Time is a fantasy television series created by Adam Horowitz and Edward Kitsis for ABC. It is a mix of fantasy and drama as the story centers around the Snow White universe where all the fairy tale characters have been transported to a town called Storybrooke in today’s America. It stars Ginnifer Goodwin, Jennifer Morrison and Robert Carlyle. The composer is Mark Isham.

Track List

1. Once Upon a Time Orchestral Suite 100
2. Henry’s Proposal 80
3. The Queen’s Curse 80
4. Jiminy Cricket 100
5. Dealing With Rumplestiltskin 80
6. Belle’s Story 100
7. Dwarves 80
8. The Huntsman 80
9. Things Are Changing in Storybrooke 100
10. Cinderella 100
11. Wedding Dance 80
12. Advising Ashley 80
13. If the Shoe Fits 80
14. Unhappy Endings 100
15. Emma and Henry 100
16. The Siren 80
17. The Man With the Wooden Box 80
18. Hope Will Return 100
19. Rumplestiltskin in Love 100
20. The Genie’s Wishes 80
21. The Road to True Love 80
22. The Family Compass 80
23. Burn the Witch 80
24. What the Queen Loves Most 80
25. The Clock Moves 100

Initially an EP of the score was released with a few tracks. I remember listening to it and thinking that this has got to get a proper release. Me an my my wife has been watching the show, although we haven’t seen it in a while. The music always kept the show’s standard up when the rest didn’t. It has now been renewed for a second season, but I don’t know if Isham is continuing his scoring duties. What I do know is that he should and this release confirms it.

From the opening track ‘Once Upon a Time Orchestral Suite’ until the last track ‘The Clock Moves’, there isn’t a weak cue between them. This is quite an astonishing feat, particularly when the score is over 1 hour. Whoever decided what cues should be included on the score should be congratulated. There’s so much good music here that I don’t know where to start.

The theme to Jiminy Cricket for example, aptly called ‘Jiminy Cricket’ is a wonderful nostalgic theme. Not sure why I get that nostalgic feeling from something so new, but it touches me emotionally. ‘Belle’s Story’ which of course is the character from Beauty and the Beast is another great theme that gives me goosebumps. ‘Cinderella’ is a fast paced and wonderful theme, very heroic and strong. With so many wonderful characters from fairy tales included, Mark Isham must have loved scoring themes for them and it shows.

Conclusion

This score is dramatic, romantic, epic and just pure bliss for the ears from start to finish. It has wonderful themes for the characters and dramatic music for appropriate scenes. It is the best TV score release of 2012 so far and I truly hope Mark Isham returns for season 2 and that we will see another great release like this.

GEEK SCORE: 88

Buy the score at Amazon.

Listen to Once Upon A Time by Mark Isham:

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Soundtrack Review: Once Upon A Time (2012), 8.3 out of 10 based on 11 ratings
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  • Megster

    I’ve been waiting the moment I watched the first episode for the soundtrack. I love it.

    • http://soundtrackgeek.com soundtrackgeek

      Glad you like it!

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