Soundtrack Review: How To Train Your Dragon (2010)

Reviewer: JØrn Tillnes
How To Train Your Dragon Soundtrack Review

How To Train Your Dragon Soundtrack Review: This is a review of the How To Train Your Dragon soundtrack by John Powell.

"This is one of John Powell's best scores for an animated movie and he has done a lot"

Yes, John Powell is back with another score for an animated movie. This time it's for the very funny and entertaining How To Train Your Dragon. The DreamWorks Animation movie is set in the era of fearless Vikings and our hero called Hiccup is ready to defend the villages from the dragons that has been attacking them recently. However, young Hiccup soon learns that there are more to these dragons than just destruction and mayhem. He befriends a dragon he names Toothless (Can you wonder why?) and finds out that the dragons are not as bad as first suspected. John Powell is a veteran when it comes to writing and composing for animated movie and this one has success written all over it.

Track List

1. This is Berk*****
2. Dragon Battle*****
3. The Downed Dragon****
4. Dragon Training*****
5. Wounded****
6. The Dragon Book*****
7. Focus, Hiccup!****
8. Forbidden Friendship*****
9. New Tail****
10. See You Tomorrow****
11. Test Drive*****
12. Not so Fireproof****
13. This Time for Sure*****
14. Astrid Goes for a Spin*****
15. Romantic Flight*****
16. Dragon's Den*****
17. The Cove*****
18. The Kill Ring****
19. Ready the Ships****
20. Battling the Green Death*****
21. Counter Attack*****
22. Where's Hiccup?*****
23. Coming Back Around*****
25. The Vikings Have Their Tea****

From Antz to Ice Age, John Powell loves to create scores for animated characters and how can we blame him? It's marvellous fun and Powell is clearly suited for the task. Last year he composed for Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs and the year before that, Bolt, Kung Fu Panda (which he co-composed with Hans Zimmer and won a few awards) and Horton Hears a Who! How To Train Your Dragon had great potential even from the drawing board. There's vikings, dragons and amazing adventure which has massive potential musically. I guess it's going to be no surprise when I say: John Powell delivers.

Over-The-Top

What makes How to Train your Dragon so good? Great use of themes and over-the-top scoring which is rare these days. What I mean by that is that there is a type of scoring missing these days. The contemporary scores we get a lot of the time doesn't really have a theme or a mission. It's drone-like music that doesn't fit a purpose. What John Powell has done here is focusing on the adventure and the fun of it. This is so phenomenally fun to listen to and you never get bored, not even for a second. From the lovely and quiet 'Romantic Flight' the the brash, bold and frantic 'Test Drive' you get a menu that is both delicious and fulfilling.

To my surprise, John Powell has been listening to Bear McCreary lately because cues like 'Focus, Hiccup' and 'Battling the Green Death' which has the theme to Human Target at the end of it for good measure. It does bother me a little, but like I said: It's never boring!

Conclusion

I will say it, even if you don't. This is one of John Powell's best scores for an animated movie and he has done a lot. Is it better than Shrek? Maybe. Is it really better than Robots? Could be. Come on, surely not better than Chicken Run!? Ok, you got me there, it's maybe just as good as Chicken Run... maybe. I love what Powell has created here and he has to be the number one go-to guy these days for animated movies (yes, that includes Michael Giacchino). I do wish Harry Gregson-Williams and John Powell would do something again, but this will do me just fine. A wonderful score from start to finish and this is a 100% must buy item!

CUE RATING: 92.5

->Get How To Train Your Dragon Soundtrack on Amazon<-

Listen to the How To Train Your Dragon soundtrack by John Powell below:
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Comments

Sniu
01 Mar 2011, 04:49
Trent Reznor could'nt believe it, I can't believe it, although it was damn funny to see him so nonplussed accepting the Oscar for "The Social Network".

"How to Train your Dragon" is super melodic, energetic and another hand full of similar adjectives. It killed my Oscar mood a little to see him lose, but John Powell probably got booked for so many future projects, so there is that. How to Train your Dragon is a great achievement, would love to know what other composers had to say about it.