- Composed by Henry Jackman
- Lakeshore Records LKS34069 / 2009 / 65:46
Dreamworks Animation’s first 3D movie seemed to engage the kids earlier in 2009, doing decent box office and attracting reasonably favourable notices. Musically, Dreamworks Animation means one thing – Hans Zimmer.These days he doesn’t often take top billing himself, and for Monsters vs Aliens the main credit goes to Henry Jackman (the first major film for which he has received main composer credit). Frankly, whoever gets their name on the cover, these scores usually follow the same model – fun, largely-orchestral music which is completely undemanding and at the same time most enjoyable. This, I’m pleased to say, follow suit. Of all the types of film for which the Zimmer style is routinely applied, I’d say these animations are where it routinely works best. While it would be nice if each film could get a more distinctive sound (compare this with the better Pixar scores, for instance) – the sound they do get, while generic, does produce entertaining results.
This album provides a generous amount of score (over 45 minutes) mixed in with a few songs, and it’s all well-composed, easy-listening stuff. It goes in one ear and out of the other – there’s nothing here to stick around in the memory – but sometimes that’s what you want from an album. It’s hard to say that the musical style has progressed in any way since Antz, the first CGI animated film from the studio, and I can’t imagine it will stick around forever, but for fans of this style, of course that’s no problem. This very pleasant album comes recommended – there’s no creativity here, but there is certainly fun to be had. ***