Wednesday , March 22 2023

CD REVIEW – Angel: Live Fast, Die Never

Angel superfans and Buffyverse compleatists, rejoice: a full hour of the gloomy, portentious orchestral music that played such a big part in making the Buffy spin-off so simultaneously grim and over-the-top can now be yours. For this CD, Australian composer Robert Kral compiled and combined his best cues from the series’s five-year run into a set of mini-suites suitable, if not for casual listening, certainly for a vampire-theme party, or entr’acte music at a lecture series for the damned.

One thing Kral’s score doesn’t convey is the show’s humor, which was key to its success. But the music is what it is – action cues and love themes for the show’s most dramatic moments.

But wait, there’s more. Christophe Beck, who scored Buffy, handed the Buffyverse’s musical reins to Kral, but not before contributing “I’m Game,” a cue from the beginning of the series whose more lyrical compositional style will ring a bell with fans of the Buffy-Angel love theme and other well-known cues from the parent series. The very competent Kral’s darker style was right for the spin-off (Angel action almost never took place during the daytime), although in the end he is not as gifted a composer as Beck.

“LA Song” is an interesting curiosity for fans, written by series executive producer David Greenwalt and sung by actor Christian Kane (Lindsay on the show). The demon Karaoke bar called Caritas being so important to Angel, it would have been nice to have more samples from that setting on this CD, even (maybe especially) the bad or funny ones. We do, however, get two tracks sung by Andy Hallett (who played green-skinned Lorne, Caritas’s owner, on the show) – Lady Marmalade and It’s Not Easy Being Green. Hallett was one of the best things about the show and fans will appreciate having these tracks available.

About Jon Sobel

Jon Sobel is Publisher and Executive Editor of Blogcritics as well as lead editor of the Culture & Society section. As a writer he contributes most often to Culture, where he reviews NYC theater; he also covers interesting music releases in various genres. Through Oren Hope Marketing and Copywriting at you can hire him to write or edit whatever marketing or journalistic materials your heart desires. Jon also writes the blog Park Odyssey at where he visits every park in New York City. And by night he's a part-time working musician: lead singer, songwriter, and bass player for Whisperado, a member of other bands as well, and a sideman.

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