This is the fourth release in Telarc's best-selling series featuring Maestro Erich Kunzel and splendid Cincinnati Pops Orchestra. Fantastic Journey is an exciting collection of music written for some of the most popular science fiction and fantasy films. The scores, which range from lyrical to boldly heroic, traverse a broad emotional landscape and conjure images of terror and thrill, mystery and beauty.
Like its predecessors, Star Tracks (CD-80094), Time Warp (CD-80106), and Star Tracks II (CD-80146), Fantastic Journey celebrates the film composer's art, but its coverage of historical and stylistic ground is more adventurous. The 16 selections, which appeal to a wide audience, sonically and thrillingly explore the dimension that, to quote Rod Serling, "lies somewhere between the pit of man's fears and the summit of his knowledge."
The centerpiece of the collection is the seven-part suite from the 1989 blockbuster movie Batman. Composed by Danny Elfman, one of the few film composers with a successful rock and roll background, the exciting work is nonetheless in the Hollywood tradition of sweeping, richly expressive film scores. The music contains a broad array of emotions, textures and tone qualities: from the delicate scoring of "The Bat Cave" to the slightly manic "Batman to the Rescue," from the dreamlike quality of "Waltz to the Death" to the rousing and heroic "Finale."
Other highlights include; Bernard Herrmann's memorable and influential "Outer Space Theme" for the 1951 film The Day the Earth Stood Still, selections from John Williams' scores for Star Wars and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, Michael Jackson's Moonwalker, and works from Poltergeist, Twilight Zone: The Movie, and Star Trek V: The Final Frontier.
Erich Kunzel has made a name for himself and the Cincinnati Pops Orchestra over the past decade with more than two dozen Billboard-charting releases on the Telarc label, three of which have the achieved the coveted number one slot. This recording continues Kunzel and the Pops' legacy of success.