On June 2nd, Miles Morales came back swinging in the dynamic, thrilling animated adventure, Spiderman: Across the Spider-verse. The climactic follow up to Spiderman: Into the Spider-verse (2018) leveled up with thousands of dedicated animators and creatives behind the film. The soundtrack especially brought the movie to life, composed of collaborators with undeniable compatibility and original sounds for an innovative project. Metro Boomin announced in December of 2022 that he was creating an album for the movie, and began to reveal his impressive list of appearances for the tracklist in May. Dominic Fike released a striking single, “Mona Lisa,” for the album, and Daniel Pemberton blew audiences away with his original score. Spiderman: Across the Spider-verse is still in theaters, where you can witness an ever-changing animation blend with vibrant instruments and lyrical moments that pierce the film’s core.
As the executive musical producer, Metro Boomin dug deep into the various vibrant energies of the film in order to make its accompanying tracks. Songs like “Am I Dreaming,” with A$AP Rocky and Roisee, incorporate strings into the supernatural sounds and lyrics that connect with the sense of direction and search for belonging that Miles grapples with throughout the film. “Annihilate,” with Swae Lee, Lil Wayne, and Offset, play into a similar sense of independence, but instead of the longing tone, this track embraces the uniqueness, recognizing its potential for Miles’ greatness rather than something to hide from. “Self Love,” featuring Coi Leray, has a smooth cadence, an element that comes up often in the film when Miles or Gwen Stacy, aka Ghost-Spider, is in the midst of contemplation or on the move between scenes. This song specifically brings an intense emotional charge to Miles and Gwen’s interactions, fighting with fate and their feelings for another. As the intensity of the movie builds and builds, so does the soundtrack. “Givin’ Up (Not The One),” a collaboration with Don Toliver, 21 Savage, and 2 Chainz, recognizes the burden that the spider-men and women face, the decisions they are forced to make and sit with for the good of everyone around them. It is a song about sacrifice, something Miles tries to conquer all on his own. This album is masterful, channeling both the unspoken and explicit pockets of the movie, delving into the richest emotions and most detailed subtleties and producing a track list that turns the film from a movie into an experience.
I will not go back and forth with you
I see you got the black widow with you
You should’ve had a black hero with you
I get an opp-arachnophobia
I’ve been litty since I flicked the lighter
Since I was an itsy bitsy spider
They’ve been tryna wash the spider out
I got spiders crawlin’ out your mouth, Spider-Verse
“Annihilate” by Metro Boomin, Swae Lee, Lil Wayne, and Offset
Further, the symphonic score composed by Daniel Pemberton gives the whirlwind animation the right traction to keep it in cohesion. The entire score is deeply attentive, with attributed themes for each character and pieces titles with witty and specific references to the scenes in which they come to life. From the get-go, you know the movie is going to be a rollercoaster, as “Across the Spider-verse (Intro)” enters with eerie noises before crashing into a drum-beat with some attitude. Then, Ghost-spider’s theme, “Spider-Woman,” has a shiny, more elemental start, connecting with Gwen’s nature of observation and intuition. The flute hums in and out, sparkling with a good touch of melancholy. This song takes off via electric guitar, funky keys, and a beat that resembles running, running fast and from something. As Gwen grapples with her father and missing Miles, she seeks isolation before finding her community. This piece makes space for the fountain of emotion Gwen is sorting through, deeply genuine and charged with determination. In contrast with “Spider-Man 2099,” the creepy and penetrating theme for Miguel O’Hara, the intimidating stud that runs the team of Spider-men, it is clear that Pemberton had a holistic understanding of each character’s dimensions and quirks, working these into the score and producing masterfully personal pieces.
Spider-man: Across the Spider-verse has hit theaters by storm. Having waited five years since its predecessor, the expectations were high, but the genius team of writers, animators, producers and musicians did not disappoint. Spider-man: Into the Spider-verse was known for its killer music, and in this film it has only leveled up. Check out the soundtrack compilation of both Spider-verse films below as we not-so-patiently await the return of Miles Morales and the whole Spidey gang!