The Flash Season 1
Original Television Soundtrack
The Flash Season 1’s Score is wonderfully done by Blake Neely! I’d been wondering if this was going to be released. As most of you know I love the scores to the CW TV Series. Even if I am not that thrilled with Season 3 of Arrow. I digress though, because we are here to talk about The Flash. So let’s get to my review for the La La Land Records release!
Being birthed and slowly introduced to us by Arrow… I think that The CW is doing an amazing job with their superhero properties!!! Barry Allen was first introduced to us through Arrow Season 2. Which I nearly forgot that it was Season 2 and not Season 3 that introduced and launched Barry. So with all that said….. The Flash has been the most upbeat superhero show I’ve ever seen. Arrow’s first two seasons were enjoyable…. we all knew Arrow was gonna be dark, and VERY Batman-like….. but The Flash being born out of Arrow, and the slow build was intense. The Flash then took off like a bolt of lightning. Blake Neely’s music for The Flash is very enjoyable! So the 2 Disc set breaks down very nicely. Disc 1 with its 29 tracks runs from the beginning to the end of the Season. Disc 2 is VERY INTERESTING, because it’s broken up into two sections. The first 15 out of 30 tracks are The Flash Vs Arrow Part I! They had made the music for this crossover available when the episode did so well. You can find that HERE, but you really want all the music…. so stick with me on this review. SERIOUSLY FOLKS!!! Get this 2 disc set from La La Land Records!!! It’s all-inclusive of what you can find in iTunes. Also I’ll be highlighting my favorite tracks in the review and expanding on WHY I like them. Rather than give mini thoughts on all 59 tracks.
Disc 1 Total Time: 78:13
So we start out with Track 1: “The Fastest Man Alive – Always Late” in this first track we hear the overall main theme of the show. I love ho this starts out, and how the instruments build up to the Speed Force!!! The overall theme of The Flash or his superhero theme every time he’s being a hero that plays starts here!!! In Track 3: “Metahumans” we get our first taste of how Blake Neely will create some amazing villain themes!!! This track starts off with a very ominous tone, and then only gets darker from there. As all villain themes should. Around the 50 second mark it turns into a really gritty kind of evil sound. Damn I love Blake Neely on this series’ music!!! Track 5: “I Have To Try” is definitely a hero building theme for Barry. As the character realizes that he has to try his best, the music slowly gains momentum. Neely builds it into this really cool sounding secondary hero theme for Barry. What I dig about this is that the music matches perfectly the emotions that Barry is going through. YES I understand it is supposed to do that. However there are certain shows that sometimes the music doesn’t match the attitude of the character that it’s being played for. The backend of this track is an upbeat lightning bolt to the ears! It is so wonderful hearing how Neely shapes the musical world of The Flash! Tracks 6 & 7 : “Proud Of You” and “A Lot Happened That Night” respectively give us more with Barry, his Father, and Joe West. Track 6 has a nice piano tune in the beginning, starting off slow. That builds into thematic sounds of epic action. Then at the end we get the hero theme built into the rest of the track. I think after the first 6 tracks, what amazes me so much about this score is how Neely can work the overall hero theme into a certain section, without it feeling forced. He throws it in there and it just sticks. With Track 7 it’s all about the night Barry’s mom died. There’s a bit of darkness to the sound at first, but then it finally comes into the light.
Track 10: “Birth Of The Flash” as the Season progresses and we get all the pieces falling into place. The music behind when The Flash is Born, is by far some of the greatest music in the series. This again showcases Neely’s ability to build us up to an overall anthem for the character of The Flash. The track time here is 3:07, and in those three minutes we get a variety of sounds. Around the 2:20 mark is where this theme ramps up the action. It seems to be a varied take on the main hero theme. I absolutely love this, because we get a slightly different version than what we are used to hearing. In Track 12: “Captain Cold” you guessed it… a full on CORE villain theme. In just 1 minute 42 seconds Neely freezes our expectations of what a dark villain theme should be! As this track continues on its path….. the coldness of the music actually is quite soothing. Track 16: “Grodd Lives” I actually had to turn my speakers up in the beginning of this one, because the track starts off with this low sinister, almost inaudible tone. I’m not saying that is a bad thing, but I had to make sure it was playing. After that Neely builds the track into a dangerously cool sounding piece of music. I’ve said this in many of my soundtrack reviews… with a short amount of time, this track is 1:37… there’s so much a composer can accomplish! Tracks 18 and 19: “Supersonic” and “Catch Me If You Can” Supersonic has this vibration to the instruments, and it’s such an elegant sound. It matches when Barry went Supersonic for the first time in the show! It kicks in right around the 1:21 min mark, and carries through to the end. It’s DUN DUN kinda thing but different. With Catch Me If You Can there is also vibrations and they start you off. I just thought when watching The Flash that these were sound effects. It’s woven right into the music, and that might be the greatest piece of musical genius for this score.
Tracks 24 and 25 are “Reveal To Iris” and “He’s A Hero” respectively. Are both very Flash Forward kinda tracks. With the Reveal to Iris track, this is when Barry actually went back in time. OK it takes place right before Barry runs around the tidal wave, and then gets sent back in time. You get the idea though. I remember watching the scene between Barry and Iris, and thinking…. WOW that music is just amping all the emotions up. It also had the actors firing on all cylinders! With the He’s A Hero track… I feel this is an almost introspective look inside Barry. It has a haunting piano in it, and this plays through for when Barry realizes that he is the Hero Central City needs and deserves! Then there is Track 26: “Tricksters” in the liner notes Blake Neely is ecstatic to score for Mark Hamill, and honestly who wouldn’t be??? I was hoping that there’d be more than just this one track for the Trickster. However what is here is sinister and fun! It has the comical dark tones that Hamill includes with his Trickster performance, along with a few upbeat joke like tones. The overall jingling type bells in the background make this one of my favorite tracks from Disc 1. The last one I’ll talk about for disc 1 is Track 27: “Called Some Friends To Help” This is where Neely really gets to have a superhero theme mashup!!! Because this is when Arrow and a few friends show up, and all hell breaks loose on Reverse Flash! The melding of the main Flash and Arrow themes is amazing. They fit together so well, and then Blake brings in these tones that seem to fit every blow the heroes are launching at Reverse Flash! DAMN I love this!!!
Disc 2 Total Time: 59:12
Disc 2 is THE FLASH VS ARROW!!!! There are 30 total tracks on disc 2. 15 are for the crossover event, the other 15 are bonus tracks. So I’m going to review them in that manner. I’ll talk about my favorite tracks from the crossover event, and then my favorites out of the bonus tracks. Because The Flash was born out of Arrow…. and now The CW has the Arrow-verse perfectly set in stone….. It only makes sense that the shows would crossover. Not just in the case of Barry Allen and his team, but even with events that happened in Oliver’s past.
THE FLASH VS ARROW PART I
So I had to go back and re watch this event in order to properly give the music it’s due. I wanted to hear the cues within the episode, and then hear them on the CD. We start off with Track 30: “Saga Sell” this 0:37 second track has The Flash and a bit of the Arrow theme music within it. It feels like the start of some high intense action music. The build up here is great. We then get Track 31: “Rainbow Raider Strikes” this one has that slow piano in the beginning, but THEN…. it gets intense!! It has part of the main Flash theme in it. And then….. well it gets dark and ANGRY! I dig music like this, because it has tones in it that you’d never think to put them where they are. The combination of the bright Flash theme, and the darkness of the villain that this theme is created for is wonderfully refreshing. At the end we even get a bit of the Arrow theme, so awesome!! With Track 36: “Give You A Lift” this is where Barry whisks Felicity away to S.T.A.R. Labs. I love the inflections in the music, and the almost romance of it all. Track 38: “What’s Up, Doc?” ok so Felicity tried her best to do a Bugs Bunny joke in this part of the crossover, this is when she is talking with Wells. Sadly Wells missed the joke, or he didn’t care enough about it to laugh. The crazy thing about this track is where the music takes us at the end of it. WOW… damn I love Blake Neely’s work here. Building the world of The Flash through the music he is creating is a wonderful thing to be able to hear. The effects I thought were separate, that are actually a part of the score….Just everything about this is amazing. So at the end of this track I stated that it gets very dark. I love how Neely’s combines the light-hearted themes and the dark undertones used for the villains. Tracks 39-41 are “Barry Gets Whammied”, “Flash Taunts Eddie”, and “The Flash Vs Arrow” These three tracks are in total just over nine minutes of music that YOU NEED TO HEAR!!! In Barry Gets Whammied there is this darkness to his themes….. Because of the events of what Rainbow Raider does to Barry effecting his emotions. I never thought I’d ever want a DARK theme for Barry… but wow what Neely put together here, in order to show Barry’s emotional state was breathtakingly well done. In The Flash Vs Arrow track… holy crap 5 minutes and 7 seconds of awesomeness. Neely keyed the music to fit in with the fight, and every time Barry is speed punching Ollie… wow it’s like the music is a part of his actions. Which is the way a damn good composer should make music!
Now for the Bonus Tracks! Track 45: “The Man In The Yellow Suit” This is from when The Flash and the Reverse Flash race… I believe. Can you say EPIC sound? Because I can. I’ve had this track blaring in my ears for the past three weeks. It’s just so good. Everything builds up to the face off between Flashes!!! There’s not a misstep in any of this music, and again that speed sound effect…. wow!!!! I love everything about Reverse Flash’s theme! Track 49: “What Barry Saw” This is a track that was used during a flashback scene… to tell us well, what Barry saw! It is one of the slower more emotional tracks, and it has that haunting piano tune which I’ve come to like so much. In Track 50: “Eobard Dessicates Wells” Blake Neely gives an even more impressive villain theme for Thawne. Once Eobard is revealed, that music just rips right into your soul! Track 53: “Lucid Dreaming” is just so damn fun. Because its Cisco! Vibe now has his own theme as well!!! This track feels metallic a bit on the sounds that are used in it, once again just another taste of what Neely has put together for this series. Track 54: “Grodd Mind Control” They have done such a wonderful job with Grodd in the series, and it should be no surprise that Blake Neely has put together this really evil sounding theme for the mind controlling gorilla. The final track is all about getting a new name! Track 59: “A New Name” is yet another Flash theme suited to Barry, and it has all the makings of being awesome. Even tough it is only 1:01 in length, this theme sets up Barry’s future character development I think. I still love the overall main hero theme for the series the most. Whenever that comes into play I get excited… Like I know something EPIC is gonna happen!!
Overall I really loved this score for Season 1 of The Flash. Each theme and track is unique to the series, and the music is very catchy. Blake Neely really has outdone himself here, and obviously separated his work types between this and the music he does on Arrow. The Flash’s music is bright, upbeat, and FUN! As the show is exactly those three things. You can get this awesome score in a flash from LA LA Land Records directly!