I’m very much a lapsed Heroes fan. I absolutely loved the first season, all the way up to the final episode, but from season two onwards I’ve become frustrated with and lost interest in the show to the point of finally giving it up over the past month or so. It’s a good thing for me, then, that the official score to the series focuses entirely on season one, when I feel the series was at its best.
This CD features familiar music by composers and performers Lisa Coleman and Wendy Melovin, with guest spots by other talents throughout. Each of the main characters from the first season is featured with a track here, and each of those tracks is a compliation of the main musical cues for that character throughout the season. The end result is that all the main characters have impressive and lengthy overtures that do a marvelous job of defining them within Heroes.
The liner booklet included with the CD features cast photos, as well as some of Tim Sale’s art that was featured on the TV show. The introduction by executive producer / director Allan Arkush is the most interesting I’ve seen in this kind of booklet in a long time. He reveals the process that goes into scoring an episode of Heroes and describes Coleman and Melvoin as huge fans of the series themselves.
Anyone who has seen any episode of Heroes will recognize the familiar and haunting synth strings that flow through most of the tracks on this collection. Most of the tracks also feature vocals by Shenkar, whose contributions to the music of the series are significant enough to warrant a credit at the start of every episode. The music of Heroes has a unique and exotic feel that is well represented here.
The CD opens with the “Heroes Title,” which really is just fourteen seconds of a percussive beat and some synth. It reminds me of the “theme” to Lost in its brevity. As effective as it is, I still love longer opening themes like Fringe is using. Each of the character tracks sounds unique enough that I would have been able to pick out the characters being spotlighted even without the track list. “Peter” is full of exotic and moody synth strings, with a bit of violin. “Claire” sounds lighter and a bit more optimistic, featuring the piano. “Hiro” has obvious Asian themes, with June Kuramoto on kato and Shoji Kameda on vocals and taiko drums. “HRG” (so glad that’s the track title, as opposed to “Noah”) is much darker, with an ominous drumbeat that joltingly gives way to carnival music halfway through. “Mohinder” is one of the most recognizable overtures, containing the familiar Heroes piano riff that begins many scenes. “Sylar” suitably paces itself with a ticking percussion very much like clockwork. The final character track, “Jessica / Niki / Gina” is full of confusion and cacophony, a great representation of the character(s).
Following the character pieces are two more tracks that incorporate the themes of all the characters into single compositions. The first is “Kirby Plaza,” the musical cue that accompanied the climactic scene at the end of season one when all the heroes confronted Sylar. “Fire and Regeneration,” named by the composers as their favorite piece, encompasses the overall feel and theme of the whole series. Cues and themes from all the characters are present, and this final arrangement provides a fantastic closing to the CD.
I definitely recommend this score, even to lapsed Heroes fans like myself. If you loved the first season and then fell out of love with the series, this music just might remind you of the good old days. Give it a try. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.
- Heroes Title (0:14)
- Peter (6:12)
- Claire (6:43)
- Hiro (7:30)
- HRG (6:24)
- Mohinder (7:59)
- Sylar (5:30)
- Jessica / Niki / Gina (5:55)
- Kirby Plaza (5:41)
- Fire and Regeneration (2:21)