Robotech:  The Shadow Chronicles (Soundtrack) by Scott Glasgow



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Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles
by Scott Glasgow

Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles (DVD)







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by Scott Glasgow

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Robotech:  The Shadow Chronicles



Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles (Soundtrack) by Scott Glasgow

Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles
Composed by Scott Glasgow
Varèse Sarabande Records (2007)

Rating: 7/10

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Listen to this soundclip of Robotech: The Shadow ChroniclesMain Titles (444 kb)

Listen to this soundclip of Robotech: The Shadow ChroniclesAriel (Love Theme) (393 kb)

More clips from Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles at


“Blending classic techniques with pioneering new ones and inspiration from the works John Williams and even James Horner, Scott Glasgow has packed quite a bit into this score.”

Space Operanime
Review by Christopher Coleman

It could be argued that the original ROBOTECH series of 1985 brought anime fandom in America to a new level and finished opening the door which the likes of SPEED RACER and STARBLAZERS had begun.  Since 1985, the beloved series has garnered a huge worldwide following and has invaded the realms of comics, novels, video games, and full-length feature films.  After a twenty-year hiatus, Harmony Gold's ROBOTECH franchise is back with its first full-length feature since the 1986,  ROBOTECH: THE SHADOW CHRONICLES.

Some have called the ROBOTECH series an animated "space opera" which immediately brings to mind another franchise which took twenty years off between "episodes."  Even further connections between ROBOTECH and STAR WARS can be drawn with the release of THE SHADOW CHRONICLES.  In addition to the "space opera" moniker and the fact that Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker) now voices one of Robotech's Commander Taylor, there is another connection worth examiing - that of the selection of composer SCOTT GLASGOW and his leitmotif-score.

The original serial was scored by Ulpio Minucci, but musically speaking, it was no Star Wars by any stretch of the imagination.  For ROBOTECH: THE SHADOW CHRONICLES, composer Scott Glasgow fully employs leitmotif much the same manner as John Williams did for Star Wars.  Thirty years ago, it was Williams who helped to bring leitmotif back as a mainstay of film music.  Aside from the Lord of the Rings Trilogy, this technique of representing a character, environment or thought through a short melody, has been on the dwindle in recent years.  For this new installation of Robotech; however, Glasgow brings leitmotif to the forefront again.

Comically, there have been statements made that there aren't enough or "any good" themes from which to hang ones hat in this score.  Nothing could be further from the truth.  The fact is that Scott Glasgow's score is full of motif after motif.  And it's their employment that makes this Robotech score such an interesting listen.  Glasgow makes good use of Minucci's title theme in the first two tracks of the soundtrack, but you'll find it cleverly employed elsewhere, "Moonbase ALuCE" (18), for example.  Additionally, Glasgow infuses the music with a number of his own new motifs and themes.  Among the best of these is his love theme, "Ariel" (15).  While a comparison with Williams' theme for Princess Leia could be drawn, Glasgow's Ariel-theme has a golden-age-edge that conjures up memories of Herrmann or Korngold and is one of the more pieces savored long after the film or CD has finished.  One example of Glasgow delving into the dark side of things can be found in the first half of "Space Station Liberty" (27) where we find motifs that appear to draw further inspiration from John Williams' Palpatine theme, and Imperial March.  Throughout the score, it isn't hard to hear inspiration from Williams' former and latter career as well as techniques from James Horner's early career.  The end result of Glasgow's work is multilayered score that, for those who are so inclined, will be the source of hours of detailed dissection.  At the same time, the more casual listener should find plenty to appreciate along the music's surface as well.

As ambitious as Glasgow's work for ROBOTECH: THE SHADOW CHRONICLES is, it doesn't quite reach it's full potential in its performance, just as many direct-to-video-films and their accompanying scores don't.  With a limited budget in place, some of the textures, nuances and cohesiveness that a full, live orchestra could produce are missing.  For all the daring and explosiveness that this Robotech score offers, the use of synthesizers, in some instances like "Battle at Reflex Point" (11), "Exodus" (12) or "Omicron Sector" (14), dilutes the impact of the music.  It's an unfortunate reality of the business, not limited to this score.  Still, if one bothers to dive below the limiting effects of both time and money on this project, one will find that there has been a great deal of effort put into the construction of this score.

ROBOTECH: THE SHADOW CHRONICLES has been met with mixed reactions from the long-time fans, yet the score is, more often than not, considered to be among the high-points.  Blending classic techniques with pioneering new ones as well as inspiration from the works of John Williams and even James Horner, Scott Glasgow has packed quite a bit into this score.  With a sequel on the horizon, it will be of great interest to see what he will do in furthering the tapestry he has begun here...and, with any luck, a bigger budget will allow him to maximize his efforts.

Rating: 7/10

Interview with composer Scott Glasgow
Got a comment?  Discuss this music here!


Track Title Track Time  Rating
1 Main Titles (Original Theme by Ulpio Minucci 1:56  ****
2 Race You Back 1:38  ***
3 War Room 2:51  ***
4 The Icarus 1:57  ****
5 Legacy of War 2:24  ***
6 The Battle Begins 3:23  ****
7 Scott Bernard 2:47  ****
8 The Regess 2:00  ***
9 The Nichols Maneuver 2:35  ****
10 The SDF-3 1:48  ***
11 Battle of Reflex Point 3:04  ***
12 Exodus 2:51  ***
13 The Awareness 1:15  ***
14 Omicron Sector 1:45  ***
15 Ariel (Love Theme) 2:25  ****
16 Maia Sterling 1:49  **
17 Lunar Battle 1:53  ***
18 Moonbase AluCE 1:57  ****
19 Janice in the Lab 3:11  ***
20 Children of the Shadow 1:49  ***
21 Command Center 3:03  ***
22 Sacrifice 3:49  ***
23 The Hybrid 1:45  ***
24 The Ark Angel 1:52  ***
25 Infiltration 2:07  ****
26 Dogfight 2:09  ***
27 Space Station Liberty 3:42  ***
28 Resolutions 3:26  ***
  Total Running Time (approx) 67 minutes  




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