composer Daniel Pemberton When he scored 2018’s “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” he pushed a few boundaries and “did something really creative and different”. When he returned to compose the soundtrack for the sequel, “Spider-Man: Beyond the Spider-VerseHe knew he would have to “take it as far as we could go”.
Pemberton says he had to make the score from scratch, which was complicated. “You try not to make music that looks like other soundtracks. You’re trying to invent your own language.”
Inventing this language took experimentation, research, and failure. “I spent two years researching and developing this score, reviewing ideas, coming up with concepts and discarding them,” he explains.
The first piece he wrote was a sketch that became the clues that opened and ended the movie. “You make music bouncing around different worlds and characters, and everyone should have a theme, a melody and a voice, but they still all need to interact with each other.”
Pemberton wanted to capture her “grace and ballet qualities” with Gwen Stacy (Hailee Steinfeld). The rock band wanted a sound that reflected its past and the look of its dream world with dripping watercolors. “It had a huge impact on how it was supposed to feel.”
It gave him the “90s, indie-synth, pop band sound.” His voice is a fluid synth sound and this is his melody.”
By comparison, Spider-Man Miguel O’Hara (Oscar Isaac) living in a futuristic New York in the year 2099 was abrasive and technological. “It’s very electronic, techno, and synthesized,” says Pemberton.
But landing on Gwen’s mark was a trial and error process.
“If you look at Gwen, she moves very gracefully and very lightly compared to Miguel who is very heavy. So, you’re trying to reflect that. There were tons of approaches until I found the right one. I went through a million synthesizer sounds,” she says. “I tried with female vocals at first, but it didn’t work. You try things in this movie, but it’s not good enough and it’s a long experiment.”
Gwen’s emotional story with her father was all about capturing a voice of warmth. “It only takes five seconds for his father to hug him, but I spent a lot of time on it. When it comes to a hug, it’s a full orchestra for a chord, but it makes the moment happen.”
Pemberton gave him “feedback guitars, heavy drums and broken bass” for Hobie Brown (Daniel Kaluuya), aka rocker Spider-Punk. This is punk.
Meanwhile, Pavitr Prabhakar’s (Karan Soni) voice, also known as Spider-Man India, was heavily influenced by Indian instruments and Charanjit Singh’s 1982 album “Ten Ragas to a Disco Beat”. It was insanely ahead of its time and this was the futuristic Indian record. Sounds like acid house.”
As for Shameik Moore’s Miles Morales, his voice was full of hip-hop culture. “The record-breaking element we developed in the first movie was something we just expanded on for that.”
Listen to the score below.