Okay, finished listening to the first three discs comprising "The Cage," "Where No Man Has Gone Before," "The Man Trap," "The Naked Time," "Charlie X," "The Corbomite Maneuver," "Balance Of Terror" and "What Are Little Girls Made Of?"
There is terrific stuff in this. I like turning the lights way down, closing my eyes and letting the music take me to so many places. Soon enough you recognize cues and sequences that were used in later episodes in particular scenes. Yet beyond that is the wonderful evocative sensibilities of this music, wonderfully orchestral and yet still conveying that sense of being far off in deep unknown space and on truly alien worlds. The music could easily have been used in feature films and belies the fact it was composed for a (comparatively) regular television series production. Alexander Courage really establishes a good overall tone in the beginning that later composers would follow and build on with their own distinct touches. Courage's work in the beginning does sometime seem a tad more dated with some of the otherworldly sounds to his compositions, something of a '50s and '60s spacey sic-fi vibe to it. Fred Steiner's work builds on Courage's and yet feels more modern without that aforementioned sound. I must admit that while Courage set the original tone and style I think I prefer Steiner's work as it feels more timeless.
That said I like Courage's original Star Trek
theme in "The Cage" to the later electric violin version heard in the earliest episodes. The next orchestral version of the main tile theme sounds more familiar and somehow right
while also connecting back to Courage's original "The Cage" version.
I can't wait to listen to the following discs, but I think that's enough for tonight.