Black Sails is a new pirate-based television show on Starz. The other most recent pirate-themed product people might have in mind is Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Flag. Both the game and the TV show feature real pirates like Charles Vane and Anne Bonny, but Black Sails mixes those real pirates with pirates from the novel Treasure Island. The soundtrack to Black Sails is what one would think of when thinking of music for a pirate TV show. It’s very pirate-y, with lots of string instruments and fast beats. It sounds similar to other pirate themed movies or games, but there are enough differences to keep you listening. There aren’t many shanties, like ACIV had — in fact, there’s only one — but it still has that feeling of being on the open sea on a pirate crew. The songs set and create a tone for the show, some of the songs even doing that for scenes we may not have seen yet. For me, there are four standout songs from the soundtrack, two of which I blended together.
1. “Theme from Black Sails” / “Black Sails Main Title”
The main theme/title is amazing and I had to combine them here. The song “Black Sails Main Title” is obviously the song in the main titles and is only 1:33, but the song “Theme from Black Sails” is the full song, all glorious 3:18 of it. It’s such a good song, with strong and heavy beats. It gives the sense of a shanty, but has the overlay of almost a rock song. There’s also a song called “Black Sails Theme And Variations”, which is just an even longer version, but with variations, as the title says.
2. “The Parson’s Farewell”
“The Parson’s Farewell” sounds like a dancing song, with a guitar of some kind starting it off. The addition of drums makes it more dynamic. Then the song gets louder and faster. You could definitely see drunk pirates having a good time dancing to this song. Near the middle the song gets a boost of energy with a heavy guitar.
3. “The Golden Vanity”
“The Golden Vanity” is the only song with words on the soundtrack. It sounds very much like a shanty that pirates would sing while working or drinking. The tune is at odds with the words, being very upbeat to the words’ depressing quality. It’s not a happy song, but very catchy. You might find yourself singing it at odd times.
Other memorable songs include “Nassau Shores”, “The Banner of Captain Flint”, “Captain Kidd”, and “All Saints”. All of the songs on the soundtrack have a bit of a rock and roll edge to them, as I suppose we glamorize pirates into being the rock stars of their day. Perhaps they were. Anyway, the soundtrack fits in with the show very well and I can’t wait to hear them all within the show.