Daniel Schweiger in If Magazine reviews Bear McCreary's season 3 BSG soundtrack.
It’s fitting that Bear McCreary has used BATTLESTAR GALACTICA to reveal himself as one of the most innovative, and intriguing composers on tv. For few other, already-clichéd ’70s sci-fi shows seemed to promise further (if lovable) goofiness than this STAR WARS knock off. Yet no tv relic has ended up being so brilliant in its in-your-face revisionism, particularly as heard in its music. For what started off as the dull, beat-heavy music of Richard Gibb’s pilot would soon turn into something wondrous under McCreary’s stewardship. As the show found its footing, the its music opened up into a seemingly limitless galaxy of melodies, among them the dangerous percussion of space battle, ethnic melodies for the twelve colonies, and the ethereal atmospheres for the gods they worshiped. It was a religioso sound that made heroes and villains into one glorious enigma. The heavy orchestra you’d expect was out the airlock (at least until the second season), proving that this young composing Turk wasn’t John Williams – thank Kobol. And with every slow step that the Galactica took towards earth, Bear McCreary unveiled some new, melodic mystery that he doesn’t so much intend to solve as explore.
That sense of discovery reached new heights in Season 3, where music seemed to carry the show more than ever before, especially in some episode’s knowing void of dialogue. The interior of the Cylon ships became a haunting, lone piano. Dark bluegrass embodied a recall of war crimes. An Indian Sitar became a space battle cry, and the unforgettable, and frankly insane of use of “All Along the Watchtower” rose Starbuck from the dead while revealing unlikely Cylons in Galactica’s midst. But old musical friends returned as well to re-affirm McCreary’s musical continuity, among them the bagpipe theme for Lee Adama and his stern father, as well as the lush, flowing string melody that announces a new generation of Cylons that prove them as more human than human.