THE BAT BLOG #7: Soundtracks Of The Bat
THE BAT BLOG!
SOUNDTRACKS OF THE BAT!
Music and Batman have gone together since anyone can remember. I first was exposed to Batman with reruns of the 1966 TV series in the 80s, plus all the cartoons Batman was featured in. Really where I came into the Bat Music was the late 80s early 90s films, and The DC Animated Universe. The way this blog will work is I’ll breakdown each soundtrack. From Batman 66, The Bat Films, all of them, and all the BTAS and Batman Beyond Soundtracks. i will also mention that there are plenty of Bat Soundtracks I’ll not be covering. They are Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Batman Arkham City Batman: Under The Red Hood, there is also DC Comics: 75th Anniversary Collection. I don’t have these, so I thought I’d acknowledge them here, but not give full coverage. I will say that I’ll be getting the DC one and the Under The Red Hood album as well. Now onto the rest…..
Batman 1966 TV Series and Film
27 tracks of awesomeness. This score from the 66 film and TV series is amazing. Most of the music in the TV series can be found on here. I absolutely love the grand sound that this score has. It transported back to when I was a kid watching the reruns in the 80s. I love being able to just listen to the music outside of the film or show. Such great stuff!! If you are someone who grew up on 60s Batman this is a must have!!!!
This has outrageous price NEW on amazon, but the used price aint that bad.
Batman Live Action Films:
There are 9 tracks on this… that’s it??? As a nine year old kid when this film came out, I was sooo excited for it. I loved hearing the music in the film. Sadly I have to say that the only track I like off this is Partyman. The rest I just can’t get into.
Danny Elfman is a Battastic Genius!!!! His music was so epic, and the Batman theme here gave way to the BTAS music.
Batman Returns (1992)
Even though I’m not a fan of this film anymore, Danny Elfman really brings it once again with the scored music. Cat Suite, Selina Transforms, and the End Credits tracks are among my favorites.
We all know the one track that was a smash from this release right? Kiss From A Rose By Seal. U2, Brandy, The Offspring, PJ Harvey, and others make up this soundtrack. Honestly I only like the Seal and U2 Songs. The rest just didn’t grab me.
The score however is freakin amazing. I think that’s one of the things that increased my enjoyment of the film. Was the scored music. It’s very epic and a lot of loud booms. Also at times there are quiet moments in a few of the tracks. Really enjoy listening to this.
I’ve never been a fan of the Smashing Pumpkins that much, so the two tracks, or one track on here really don’t grab me. I will say right off the bat that R. Kelly’s Gotham City and Jewel’s Foolish Games were the only tracks when this was released that I liked. What the hell is R.E.M. doing on this soundtrack?? I LIKE R.E.M. they should not be associated with this film. Their song Revolution is ok, it’s not something I could listen to more then once. Lazy Eye by The Goo Goo Dolls is another track that surprised me, as to why is it on here? It’s also a track mixed with the heavy Goo Goo stuff, and the soothing sounds they’d have from 1998 on. I will say right away that after the seventh track I know none of the rest of the artists on this thing. I did listen to each of the remaining tracks, and they didn’t grab me.
Oh and I bet you are saying to yourself while reading this, “Why Didn’t you mention Look Into My Eyes?” Well I do remember where I was at this time of my life, and Rap/R&B/Soul music was all around me, and I have to say that I don’t mind some of Bone-Thugs-N-Harmony’s stuff from this era. Five out of the fifteen tracks are good. That’s not saying much is it?
Sadly the score to Batman & Robin never got a commercial release (I’m not telling how I got it), and the original art for it SUCKS!!! I refuse to put it on this post.
Much like Batman Forever I throughly enjoyed this musical score. The music is epic, and also quiet when it needs to be.
THE LEGEND ENDS…
That’s right The Dark Knight Rises put a period on the NolanVerse. Hans Zimmer excels once again with the epicness of a Batman score. Currently I only have three tracks from the Deluxe Edition. They are A Storm Is Coming, Gotham’s Reckoning, and Rise. I do plan on getting the rest of the deluxe edition soon.
The only differences between these two are that the Deluxe Edition has 3 additional tracks.
Batman in Animation:
Batman The Animated Series:
BTAS was groundbreaking, innovative, and revolutionary. So much so that it is well loved to this day, 20 years after it’s release. I really have an ear for recognizing great instrumental music, and the music that comprised the entire DCAU is amazing. So far only BTAS and Batman Beyond soundtracks have been released over the years. Lala Land Records did say that they are planning to do more. I’m hoping for STAS and JL/JLU soon.
Batman The Animated Series Volume 1 consists of 2 discs and 71 tracks, for a total running time for each disc is:
Disc One: 62:02
Disc Two: 67:25
Sadly this was a limited edition run of 3,000 copies when it came out in 2008. You can find it on ebay for outrageous prices, because of it’s rarity. However Lala Land rereleased Volume 1 in a 2 CD set, but there are only 69 total tracks on the rerelease.
Disc one starts out with Gotham City Overture, and Batman The Animated Series Main Title, after that, there are multiple tracks from the following BTAS Episodes:
Gotham City Overture is amazing, and we all know the BTAS Main Title is epic.
On Leather Wings
While I never really cared for this episode of the series, the music is just epic. I think that the music tells a sadder story, then what was presented in the episode itself.
The Last Laugh
Yes a Joker episode, this one has fun upbeat, and comical music. As well as deep dark sinister tones. Very awesome.
It’s Never Too late
This was an episode I liked, and it tells a very sad story. The music is very complimentary to the plot.
While I think Poison Ivy is hot, I do not think her plots have any real consequence. The music makes the episode more interesting then the actual plot.
Christmas With The Joker
Christmas and the Joker just go together!!! I love the Game Show part of one of the tracks in this episode set. Everyone wants a visit from Santa Joker, and Elf Harley!!! The music for this episode was fun and funny, as well as being dramatic!
BTAS Alternate Main Title (The Adventures of Batman & Robin)
When the Seasons switched over, and this theme is spectacular. It’s something new and different. Very awesome.
Two Face Parts 1 & 2
I really loved this episode, and the musical score makes it so much better. There are high moments, and low sad moments, that just move the story along nicely. After all Two-Face is somewhat of a tragic character.
This was a very comical Joker episode. The music exemplifies that. The da da dun dun da of Cussing out the joker is just a great music cue. Poor Charlie collins didn’t know what hit him.
I’ve never been a fan of Killer Croc, but the music in Vendetta is great. It really lends itself to amazing action.
Perchance to Dream
This was a very epic, and interesting episode! It seems that Bruce NEVER lost his parents, thus he NEVER became Batman. Or so it seems, because there is always a Perchance to Dream! The music was kicked up in this one, because of how emotional the episode is. There are a few dark tones, not to scare, but to entice! Very awesome!!!!!
Birds of a Feather
I’m not that much of a Penguin fan. I dunno why, but the music in this episode was superbly done, as is all the music! Because it is a Penguin episode, the music is catered to his style of tomfoolery. It’s fun and upbeat, which makes for a better episode.
Batman The Animated Series End Credits
Ahh the end Credits theme, very awesome. Much like the original main theme, the end credits take you out of every episode. I normally never pay attention to end credits in anything. I mean heck, the show or whatever is over, but this really made you pay attention.
Music of the Bat 101
This is a six minute forty five second track, where Shirley Walker is walking us through the tones used, and feel they were going for. It’s almost like a music lesson on making the BTAS music.
Overall Thoughts BTAS Volume 1:
Amazing, simply amazing!!! So happy that we finally have the DCAU Music on CD releases.
This was a limited edition set of 3,000 copies released on March 31, 2009.
One Disc Set Total Running Time 62:05:
The first theatrical DCAU film, and sadly the last. Batman: Mask Of The Phantasm didn’t do so well at the box office. However it killed in home media sales. This showed Warner Bros and DC, that the Direct to Video market was the best place for these films.
The music in this is as epic as the TV series stuff. However in Mask of the Phantasm Shirley Walker and Co. amped it up past ten. This really feels like a huge theatrical score. Plus Tia Carrere has a song on here called, “I Never Even Told You” ”Birth of Batman” and “Joker’s Big Entrance” are two of my favorite tracks from this. I also enjoy listening to “Welcome to the Future” If you love this film, you must track down this soundtrack!!!!
On July 19, 2012 Lala Land Records released Batman: The Animated Series Volume 2 on a 4 Disc Set. You can order it here from their website. Price is $59.98. Volume 2 consists of four discs this time, with 1984 tracks. The total running time for the set is 291:14.
OH. MY. GOD. When LaLa Land Records announced this in 2012, I was flabbergasted! FOUR DISCS!! COUNT EM! FOUR!!!
Disc One through Disc Three are 50 tracks each, and Disc Four is 34 Tracks.
Track 01: Batman The Animated Series Theme – Danny Elfman
Tracks 02-12: Beware The Gray Ghost – Carl Swander Johnson
Simply Amazing! I love this episode for several reasons. The number on reason is that Adam West is the voice of Simon trent/The Gray Ghost, and reason number 2 is that the music is very grand!!!
Tracks 13-30: The Cat and the Claw Parts I and II – Harvey R. Cohen
The Cat and the Claw, I like this as a Catwoman episode, but The Red Claw is just a crappy villainous. The music however makes up for the useless plot of the episode. I love some of the slower, softer tones in these tracks.
Tracks 31-39; Nothing to Fear – Shirley Walker
A Scarecrow episode, I’ve never really enjoyed the scarecrow stuff. However the music is spectacular!!! Very upbeat and dramatically awesome.
Tracks 40-49: Heart of Ice – Todd Hayen and Shirley Walker
Heart of Ice, the story that made Mr. Freeze something other then just a common criminal. The DCAU creators actually turned him into a sympathetic and tragic character. The music that goes along with this, is just outrageously awesome. That title card music is eerie, and mysterious!!
Track 50: End Credits (Extended) – Danny Elfman
Track 01: Main Title (Piano Version) – Danny Elfman and Shirley Walker
Tracks 02-10: Appointment in Crime Alley – Stuart Balcomb
This was the episode where Roland Daggett was gonna tear down the neighborhood where Crime alley is. As we all know Crime Alley is where Bruce’s parents were murdered. When watching the episode I always wanted to hear the score behind the dialogue and sound effects. Now that is here. And I’m not afraid to say it, just hearing the music makes me cry.
Tracks 11-19: Mad as a Hatter – Harvey R. Cohen
The Mad Hatter is just awesome, and hearing the music that was behind his debut episode, was just as great.
Tracks 20-25: The Strange Secret Of Bruce Wayne - Lolita Ritmanis
Psssssssssst Bruce Wayne is Batman… shhh.. don’t tell anyone! Because you have Dr. Hugo Strange, and three of Batman’s lead villains in this episode, the music will be epic right? Right! There are tons of loud booming dramatic moments, as well as some quiet eerie moments.
Tracks 26-34: I’ve Got Batman In My Basement – Shirley Walker and Carlos Rodriguez
The music for this episode seems like a cross between Joker and Penguin music, yet neither villain had anything to do with this one.
Tracks 35-49: Feat of Clay Parts I and II – Jeff Atmajian
At first it’s the tragic story of Matt Hagen, becoming Clayface, then the dude just becomes evil. The music for this one has very subtle melodies, and is very suspenseful !
Track 50: End Credits (Alternate Beginning) – Danny Elfman
Track 01: Main Title (MIDI Version) – Danny Elfman and Shirley Walker
Tracks 02-12: Almost Got ‘Im – Stuart Balcomb
BEST COMEDIC EPISODE OF THE ENTIRE SERIES!!!!!! This episode has a jazz theme to part of the music, and it is just amazing. End. Of. Story. The entire composition is great!!!
Tracks 13-23: If You’re So Smart, Why Aren’t You Rich? – Carlos Rodriguez
The Maze of the Minotaur. I love this episode, because it showcases Robin’s skills! The epic music knows no bounds in this one. Especially when the Hand of Fate is after you!!!!
Tracks 24-40: The Demons Quest Parts I and II - Michael McCuistion and Harvey R. Cohen
Ra’s al Ghul knows who Batman is! The music behind this two part episode at times is very sinister, and it will make you shiver!!!!
Tracks 41-49: The Laughing Fish – Shirley Walker
While I love the music from this episode, the first few tracks don’t seem to fit a Joker episode. When I got to the track Batman Rides Shark/Jumping Joker Sees Jaws that’s when I felt it fit the episode.
Track 50: End Credits (Alternate Ending) Danny Elfman
Track 01: Main Title (with Sound Effects) – Danny Elfman
Tracks 02-16: Shadow of the Bat Parts I and II – Shirley Walker and Harvey R. Cohen
Ahh yes the debut of Barbara Gordon… well Babs as Batgirl!!!!! These tracks have very soft nature to them, sure there are the big moments in them. However at first very soft tones. I love how this orchestra can just change stuff up like that.
Tracks 17-21: Harley and Ivy – Peter Davidson
This is where I like Ivy the best, teamed up with Harley. We are back to the big beats, and emphatic moments, I like this!
Tracks 22-27: Read My Lips – Shirley Walker
Hey Dummy!!!! When I went back and watched this for the podcast record of Legends Of the Dark Knight, I had forgotten it was a Scarface episode. Let alone the debut of Scarface. Lots of good instrumentals being done with these tracks, I’m enjoying them just as much as the episode. And just like Almost Got ‘Im this has somewhat of a few jazz tunes in it.
Tracks 28-33: Fire From Olympus – Shirley Walker
The music is the only good thing about this episode. Love the drums and big brass in this.
Track 34: End Credit (Alternate Beginning and Ending) – Danny Elfman
Overall thoughts BTAS Volume 2:
Overall BTAs Volume 2 is freakin amazing! It has music from episodes that I love, and always wanted to listen to outside the actual episode. This is a must get for any TRUE BTAS fan.
And now we go Beyond!!!!!
If you are used to the orchestral music of BTAS, and have never seen Batman Beyond Before this CD might not be for you.
I’ve told this story before, when I stumbled upon Batman Beyond in 1999, I was like WHOA!!! I never thought they continued the DCAY back then. I just thought it ended with Superman: The Animated Series. I remember the one thing that grabbed from the opening credits of the cartoon, why the hell is Bruce Wayne old??? After awhile I started to watch the series, and I freakin loved it. The music as well is just awesome! For Neo Gotham the DCAU Creators chose to go with Kristopher Carter as a lead composer. Shirley Walker and the usual crew are also doing tracks on this. The style of music that they were going for was described the best by Bruce Timm himself on the back of the CD.
Batman Beyond’s music is “…a combination of electronics and state-of-the-art rock elements that sound more authentic than anything currently heard on broadcast TV, while still staying tru to the “mysterioso” mythos of the original character… So, make some room on your CD rack-and remember to PLAY IT LOUD!” -Bruce Timm Producer, Batman Beyond
1. Main Title – Composed by Kristopher Carter
The main title brings you into the show, and makes you wanna watch it. I’ve always loved this theme song!
2. Cold Versus Hot – Composed by Lolita Ritmanis
This is a high tech run and gun it seems. I know that statement is contradictory, as Batman NEVER uses guns. However I stand by the statement, because it feels like this track is all about chasing the bad guys!
3. Terrific Trio Versus Rocketeers – Composed by Michael McCuistion
Do trios always happen in the DCAU?? This track starts of slow, then the rock guitars hit your ears! It is very awesome!!!!
4. Bat-Slapped In Store – Composed by Kristopher Carter
Yet another high energy track, again I can’t help envisioning Terry Bat chasing mad Stan to this!
5. Farewells – Composed by Lolita Ritmanis
This has a nice piano intro, and some softer tones to it, before the harder edges cut in a few times. I can listen to this one over and over.
6. Batman Defeats Chappell – Composed by Kristopher Carter
In the beginning of this high energy track, it seems to start out like radio static. I like that effect.
7. Batman Chases Inque – Composed by Kristopher Carter
It’s all about the Chase! This one has a very interesting intro, with what sounds like n alarm, but it isn’t. Then we go into a melodic electronic beat. Very engaging song.
8. Yachting With The Card Gang – Composed by Shirley Walker
This track has a very low tone to it, not much of a high energy here. however I do think that is a good thing, because it gives us a break from the high energy of the last seven tracks.
9. Batman’s First Fight – Composed by Michael McCuistion
The title says it all, Batman’s fightin bad guys! It starts off a bit high energy, then the tempo changes. I like that, because it slows the fight down a bit. Then it goes back into kickassery mode. Very solid track here.
10. The Legacy Continues – Composed by Michael McCuistion
This is again a nice slower track, very melodic. I am really surprised that this kinda track is on here, but I understand why. It was in an episode where BRuce says the legacy continues.
11. Hotel Scuffle – Composed by Shirley Walker
This has it’s epic moments, but for the most part a slowed down song. So far re-listening to this soundtrack it is really surprising me.
12. Trouble In The Museum – Composed by Shirley Walker
This one has some thunder behind it, that low threatening, rumbling thunder you’d hear in the distance. It’s a very fresh track I think.
13. Inque Escapes – Composed by Kristopher Carter
Here we go, back to the high energy songs. Inque will always prove to be a icky mess for Batman.
14. Nuclear Lab Destruction – Composed by Michael McCuistion
Was there a tin can used in this track? There is a section, that I could’ve sworn I heard a can clanking. Overall this one falls in the middle of being slower and melodic versus high energy rock.
15. Golem Chases Shoppers – Composed by Shirley Walker
This one sounds very metallic in the beginning, then it goes into a great guitar riff. how the composers are combining rock and electronic stylings is beyond my thoughts!!!
16. Willie Defeated – Composed by Shirley Walker
Again I’m hearing siren like themes in here within the first forty seconds. I have to say with this soundtrack, listening to it on it’s own is very fresh, yet strange. The reason for that is that I don’t have the show to figure out where the song fits. I mean I know this happened at the end of the Golem episode, but wow, this stuff is amazing.
17. Genetic Theft – Composed by Michael McCuistion
Very twangy, if that is even a word, but the guitars, and beats in this are very interesting to the ear. It’s not your general rock or electronica song.
18. Joker Chase – Composed by Lolita Ritmanis
What’d I say earlier chase music! Very upbeat tempo, yet a slight dark undertone. At first I thought that this might be the only track on the disc that I wasn’t gonna be able to get into. Then the electronica and guitar hit, and I was like oh I remember this in the show. It has a great beat to it.
19. Move To The Groove – Composed by Lolita Ritmanis
This one is the one that I don’t care for at all out of the 20 tracks. I can’t put my finger on it, but it seems to be very oriental.
20. End Credits – Composed by Shirley Walker
The end credits, I love this!! So awesome, very dark ending credit song, that starts of slow, and then kicks into high gear.
19 of the 20 tracks are all amazing!!!!!! I do hope that if and when La La Land Records gets to doing this, that they include these twenty tracks, plus more!!!!
Released October 17, 2000, this soundtrack to the Direct To Video Feature Film has 14 tracks. 12 of which are all produced and composed by Kristopher Carter
The music fits so well with the film, and I can listen to this soundtrack over and over.
1. Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker
I love the guitar in this! Then the epic reveal, and the slow down. This theme is just very melodic, and it will put you in a trance!!
2. Industrial Heist
After that slightly quiet opening track, we get to this. Terry Bat’s first fight with the Jokerz of the film. I love the little nuances that this track has. It also carries a hint of suspense!
3. Meet the Joker
I thought the Joker was gone? Apparently not! This track is a very eerie feeling, it’s dark, and deeply melodic. I love the tension it creates.
4. Joker Crashes Bruce’s Party
Joker’s always ruining Batman’s fun! Fun and upbeat tempoed song, very cool, and it’s set to a fight scene, I love it!
5. Terry Relieved of Duty
“You don’t know what you want, none of you EVER did!” A line that no bat fan will ever forget. This track is somber at best, very soulful, and superbly scored!!
6. Nightclub Fight/Terry Rescues Bruce
The nightclub fight, oh man such great music. Then when finding Bruce, holy hell talk about tugging at your heart strings. This track actually has orchestral bits in it. So awesome!
7. Trap for Tim
Where to begin, umm how about Tim Drake is old and bitter. This song is kinda short, but then again it doesn’t have to be super long. It’s part of the flashback in the film. This means more of the orchestral stuff, yay!!!!
8. Joker Family Portrait
Taaadaaa! Joker is starting a family, yet he borrowed one of Bruce’s kids! Such a Joker themed tune, very unique and awesome!!!
9. Arkham Mayhem
When Batgirl learns the truth the darkness of the music kicks in! Sad and somber track is what we have here, I love the way the music is tugging at the heart strings.
10. Batman Defeats the Jokerz
Joerz get defeated! Battle scene music GO! We are back to the epicness of the score, with high energy tracking!
11. Joker Meets His End (Again)
That’s not funny at all! This track is a cross between the orchestral and electronic stylings. I love this! So very epic.
12. Healing Old Wounds
A song of healing, and forgiveness! Love the way this ends.
13. Crash [The Humble Brothers Remix] – Static-X, Mephisto Odyssey
I’d only heard Push It, by Static-X before this song. I really enjoy this for how it accompanies the film.
14. Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker (End Title) – Kenny Wayne Shepherd
Kenny Wayne Shepard did an amazing job in rocking the film theme song out!!!!!! The guitar riff is so elegant, and hard edged at the same time.
There ya have it folks, If you’ve made it this far in the reading give yourselves a Batarang cookie! I loved going through all the music on Batman that I have, but I will never do a blog this long ever again. HUGE THANKS to TJ Greene, for supplying me with a lot of the film stuff, WorldsFinestOnline for images, and so many others. This puts a exclaimation point on BATMAN WEEK here at the GCRN. Stay Tuned for one last blog post from me all about the Batmobile!!