Steamboy was a spectacle to witness. It wasn't mindblowingly great, nor did it have strong and deep meanings. It was, however, a grand sight to see, a thoroughly enjoyable film to watch. As I viewed the film alone in the cinema after a bout of disastrous exam papers, the characters and the simply gorgeous artwork allowed me to leave the place with a satisfied grin on my face. Nothing like explosions and more explosions to lift those spirits. A major factor that made Steamboy so much fun was the superb music within. Its original soundtrack gathers the best elements of the musical score, packing it into a CD chock full of greatness.
The music in Steamboy OST is composed by Steve Jablonsky, who is part of Hans Zimmer's team of composers and conductors. He has had his hands in helping score Pearl Harbor, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, and even Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty. He has several solo works, including Desperate Housewives and The Amityville Horror, but his score for Steamboy really takes the cake. The music is very emotional and very exciting. The action within is almost never-ending. It reminded me of times long ago of glory, and of The Rocketeer! Or even John Williams' Back to the Future Trilogy scores.
Pieces like "The Chase," "Raid by the Airship," and "Collapse and Rescue" are all electrically-charged and fast-paced. Listening to these songs will no doubt get your heart pumping, knowing that something grand is happening within these tunes. And all those explosions! Horns are blaring proudly, and the strings are racing along, all to create that sense of urgency and wonder at the events occurring. "The Sortie of Scotland" and "Ray's Dilemma" are pieces that add even more to the sense of desperation and danger.
There is the dive into the sinister as well. "Two Delusions" neatly conveys the confusion and mania that the main villain has dwelling in his mind. Tubas provide a deep bass sound, while a hint of a male chorus creates a sombre atmosphere for the story to spiral into darkness and despair. Sounds very melodramatic, I know, but not all the compositions are that serious. "Scarlet" re-arranges the main theme with a more sweeter, lovelier tone. "Crystal Palace Waltz" is one of my favorites, a song that is both childish, yet charming as well. The flute in that piece manages to bring out the wonder of the children in the film.
"Manchester 1866" begins with a sweet calm, as if the morning has just started, before things start become more and more intense with every stanza. Percussion beats cut in and the song gets into the swing of things. That being high-end adventure and excitement. My favorite song is "Ray's Theme", the song that closes the soundtrack. It is short, but manages to sum up the entire movie in a grand way. It has 'The End' written all over it and it is a fitting finale to a good orchestral score.
The Steamboy OST is a wonder to listen to. Though I found several parts of the music to be repetitive, those parts work together rather well. For those adventure buffs or for people who simply enjoy a thrilling ride with danger, suspense and yes, explosions, take a gander at this.