Sparks & Shadows, a new boutique record label founded by composer Bear McCreary (MARVEL'S Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D, The Walking Dead), announces the release of the Europa Report - Original Motion Picture Soundtrack. The album will be available through Amazon.com, select soundtrack sellers, and all digital providers on August 2, 2013.
"Early on, I was very tempted to really play with the found footage element and have very little musicto actually play with a lot of silences or sounds of the spaceship," said director Sebastián Cordero. "However, the minute we started editing the film together, we realized there was a huge risk of losing the human side of the story if we didn't enhance it with music."
Finding the emotion of the storyline was key for McCreary. "Sebastián and I knowingly took a bit of a risk," said McCreary. "There are moments in this score where we are telling a cinematic story. When the celli come in with that main theme, to me it sounds luscious and cinematic. It's a real melody. But I think the film earns it, and the counter balance to that are those heavy synthesizer and the dissonant atonal elements. I think it means that when those melodic moments come in, they are more powerful and more subtle at the same time."
This kind of approach shows why McCreary was called a "Secret Weapon" by WIRED Magazine. His unique combination of atypical instrumental background (he is a professional accordionist) with rigorous classical training prepared him to compose for disparate genres. By the age of 24, McCreary was launched into pop culture history with his groundbreaking score to Syfy's hit series Battlestar Galactica, for which he composed "the most innovative music on TV today" (Variety). It "fits the action so perfectly, it's almost devastating: a sci-fi score like no other" (NPR). Io9.com declared Bear McCreary one of the Ten Best Science Fiction Composers of all time, listing him alongside legends John Williams, Jerry Goldsmith and Bernard Herrmann.
McCreary, who recently earned his second Emmy nomination for Da Vinci's Demons, continues to write for the television show The Walking Dead. Recently he lent his talents to Syfy and Trion World's groundbreaking entertainment experience, Defiance, a combined launch of a MMO videogame. His upcoming projects include Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. for ABC, Black Sails for STARZ and the film Knights of Badassdom. His other credits include critically acclaimed scores for series such as Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Eureka and The Cape. His swashbuckling score for Human Target featured the largest orchestra ever assembled in the history of series television and earned him his first Emmy nomination. His videogame credits include SOCOM 4 and Dark Void.
Europa Report follows a contemporary mission to Jupiter's moon Europa to investigate the possible existence of alien life within our solar system. When unmanned probes suggest that a hidden ocean could exist underneath Europa's icy surface and may contain single-celled life, Europa Ventures, a privately funded space exploration company, sends six of the best astronauts from around the world to confirm the data and explore the revolutionary discoveries that may lie in the Europan ocean. After a near-catastrophic technical failure that leads to loss of communication with Earth and the tragic death of a crew member, the surviving astronauts must overcome the psychological and physical toll of deep space travel, and survive a discovery on Europa more profound than they had ever imagined.
"When you have those moments when the score is pulling on your heart strings, even though it's a found footage movie, it makes sense because Europa Ventures wants to manipulate you," McCreary described. "They want you to feel this certain way because it's in their interest for you to feel that way. And so in that regard, even though there are times where the score is definitely doing something cinematic, it still lands within the rules of the found footage genre."
Other recent releases from Sparks & Shadows include McCreary's soundtracks for Da Vinci's Demons, featuring the Emmy nominated Main Title theme, and the multimedia science fiction epic Defiance, the television series (Syfy) and the MMO shooter game (Trion Worlds).