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A Leak on the New Moon October 12, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Cinematics, Muzak.
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The New Moon soundtrack has leaked online, and as the roster of bands announced before its release suggested, it’s really quite an exciting one.

I’m not sure how the soundtrack producers managed to get so many talented names on board, but somehow they did. Improving quite vastly from the first soundtrack’s collection of artists, the tracklisting name checks every indie artist from Grizzly Bear to Death Cab for Cutie.

Even more outstanding is the fact that every song is original and exclusive to the soundtrack, although I have my questions about Muse’s I Belong to You, which is labelled here as a “New Moon Remix” but is really just a shortened version, omitting the Mon Coeur S’ouvre a Voix portion.

The major difference with this soundtrack in comparison with the first is that it’s a lot more sombre and downbeat, which (groan) in some ways reflects the tone of the second book.

The stand-out tracks, predictably, are Bon Iver and St. Vincent’s Roslyn, Thom Yorke’s Hearing Damage, Grizzly Bear’s Slow Life and Editors’ No Sound but the Wind. This could change for me, however, as I haven’t had a good listen to some of the tracks. The good news is, however, that there doesn’t seem to be any duds.

Listen to Bon Iver & St. Vincent and Grizzly Bear’s contributions below.

Bon Iver & St. Vincent – Roslyn (download)

Grizzly Bear (feat. Victoria Legrand) – Slow Life (download)

View full post for the complete tracklisting >>


Gleeful New Music October 8, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Muzak, Televisual.
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Glee Cast

One of the new US television season’s biggest hits has been musical comedy series Glee. Each week at least three songs are featured on the show, and this week’s batch have just hit the internets.

This week there’s four tracks, all, as usual, covers of well-known songs.

Firstly, there’s a mash-up of Bon Jovi’s It’s My Life and Usher’s Confessions Pt. II by the boys of the Glee club. Surprisingly, it works really well.

Glee Cast – It’s My Life / Confessions Pt. II (download)

Then the girls take on, again, a mash-up, this time of a more uptempo cover of Beyoncé’s Halo mixed with Katrina and the Waves’ Walking on the Sunshine.

Glee Cast – Halo / Walking on the Sunshine (download)

Cast members Lea Michele and Cory Monteith next cover Jordin Sparks and Chris Brown’s No Air. It’s a fairly standard cover without much changes. If you liked the original, you’ll like this, otherwise there’s not much new here.

Glee Cast – No Air (download)

The final cover is an odd one – Avril Lavigne’s Keep Holding On. They do a really good job on this one, even if the opening does unnecessarily try to live up to their earlier Don’t Stop Believing cover. The backing vocals from the rest of the Glee club make this a cover that actually improves on the original quite a bit.

Glee Cast – Keep Holding On (download)

The episode with these tracks airs tonight in the US, and Glee comes to E4 some time early in 2010, apparently. If you haven’t checked it out yet, make sure you do, because it definitely lives up to the hype.

The Lost Art of the Theme Song October 6, 2009

Posted by Patrick in Muzak, Televisual.
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One of my favourite things about television shows has always been their theme songs. Some will argue that they just eat into time that could have been spent on more meaningful things like character development and plot, but I disagree. I’d gladly sacrifice 30 seconds of a scene to get my theme songs back.

Now, not everyone is doing away with these treasured hallmarks of television, most American cable networks are putting actual effort into their opening credits. Each is at least 30 seconds long (the accepted minimum), but they often pushing far above that.

The opening credits used to set the tone for the show while also giving us a quick run through of who’s who in the show. I needed this. I still need this.

Granted, some programmes don’t really need a theme song, such as Lost, which I think works fine without it. This does however exclude them from any future “Guess the Theme Tune” games. And that’s a shame.

What’s almost worse is those shows that once had opening credits, and then ditched them out of the blue. That’d be One Tree Hill (the credits of which were probably the best part of any episode), Grey’s Anatomy and Desperate Housewives. All of which had half-decent and memorable theme songs once upon a time.

What would The X Files, Cheers or Friends have been without their theme songs? Actually I’m not sure, but I don’t think I would have liked any of them.

So out of the opening credits still around, I have picked a select few.