Arrow Season One Score Review
In 2012, we received a new (sort of) hero on the CW. It was the hero a city deserved, and needed because unlike other heroes, he wore green and was much more fashionable…even if his wheels were only on two. Most importantly, he came armed to the teeth with great writing, amazing supporting characters, and just the right mix of grit, humor, and a huge dollop of action. One thing that is often overlooked in the phenomenon that is Arrow, is the show’s score.
Arrow‘s score plays like one from an action film, and is an epic narrative accompaniment to the first season. When you listen to the tracks you can tell what’s going on. Blake Neely is a composer who understands what his subjects basic needs are in sound, and, creates a beautiful landscape in his scores that truly flesh out the stories we watch (he’s helped compose on one of my favorite scores–and it’s subsequent sequels–the first three of Disney‘s Pirates of the Carribean).
In Arrow, Neely explore’s string heavy orchestrations, with tracks varying in their use of electronic sounds. I feel like a bit of it does remind me of Hans Zimmer’s score for The Dark Knight–which is understandable as Neely and Zimmer have worked together early on in Blake’s career (though not The Dark Knight in particular). The score has 29 tracks, which almost feels like a little too much, but, I’d rather have all the tracks, than miss out on one that could’ve been cut.
Some of my personal favorites are as follows:
City in Ruin-this particular track reeks of menace. While the digital parts are not something I’m super keen on, the percussion seems so raw on this, it feels like the orchestra was playing on trash cans, or something “other”!
Vigilante Justice– which makes good use of the digital elements, but also keeps the higher pitches from being unbearable.
I Forgot Who I Was– Possibly this is because I’m a sucker for the cello…but this piece really does stand out in how different it is from the rest of the score.
Shado Sees an Emerging Hero– Oliver answering the call to be something more…that’s this track. It’s got a very, caterpillar-to-butterfly/the sun rises over the mountain feeling.
Oliver Queen Suite– the LONGEST track on the score (9:47) if you wanted the soundtrack in a nutshell, that would be this track. It takes you through all the emotions of the story…play this track when you try give a run-down of Arrow to your friends (it will also help you from talking longer than 10 minutes).
If you enjoy epic music scores (especially those in the vein of Hans Zimmer’s, and Neely’s other works) I would suggest adding this to your collection. Also, you Arrow fans & collectors because this is an epic driving, and work-out score for you. If you’re into that sort of thing!