Right from the first track, this soundtrack creates a sense of wonder, adventure and human endeavour, which ultimately is what the associated TV documentary is trying to impart. There are equal parts orchestral, choral and ethnic influences throughout the work which combine rather well into an aural odyssey, clearly in support of the visual matter. The 3 part documentary sheds light on the evolution and spread of modern human (i.e. Homo Sapiens) into a truly global species.
Darren Fung is a Canadian composer with good credits to his name including the mini series, ‘Lost Years’ and Canadian TV’s Hockey Theme. According to the press release, “Darren currently serves as the Second Vice President of the Screen Composers Guild of Canada, and acts as a Program Advisor for the Canadian Film Centre’s Slaight Music Residency.”
One thing I like about this sound track is that the main musical theme gets repeated in various contexts and characterisations across several tracks. Starting with the first track, “Something Remarkable”, you hear within the first 20 seconds this melodic marching and string laden musical theme which really comes into its own in later tracks such as: “Modern Humans” and “Before Columbus”, both of which feature a full orchestral exposition of the theme, complete with piano, harps, percussion, drums and choral aahs, for good measure.
Overall, the music does not let you down as it’ll constantly remind you of the enormity of the undertaking being described in the documentary. Unfortunately, it seems the documentary cannot be viewed online in the UK at this time, otherwise it would have been great to see if and how the series match up to the music. Excellent job.