CD Review: Garden State Soundtrack

Is it too late to jump on the Garden State bandwagon? Oh well, who cares! The soundtrack is my new favorite CD. It’s fantastic. Seriously, it’s truly great. It’s just so stinkin’ awesome. WHAT??? You don’t own the Garden State soundtrack? I want you to stop reading this blog right this second and go out and get it. I don’t care what time it is, record stores are open really really late. I’m serious, go get it now. I really want you to have it, because I like you and I don’t want you to live without this CD. I’ll wait here until you get back.

….OK now that you’re back, we’ll just breathe a collective sigh of relief. Whew! It’s going to be ok.

Now that you have filled that gaping hole in your music collection, I can get down to the business of rhapsodizing over this phenomenal soundtrack. Unusually for me, I really like every song on the album. It grooves, but without getting all up in your grill, so it’s good to exercise to, drive to, or have one as background music. That’s pretty hard to come by in one CD.

The opening track, “Don’t Panic” by Coldplay, is engaging and sets a good tone for the rest of the mix.

There are two songs by the Shins, “Caring is Creepy” and “New Slang.” Normally I would question having two songs by the same band on one soundtrack, but I really like the Shins so I don’t mind in this context. I know it’s trendy to like the Shins, so it’s probably trite of me to mention it, but ok, so I’m trite. I said it, what?

In between the two Shins songs comes “In the Waiting Line” by Zero 7. This is probably my favorite song on the CD. It grabs you, but in a mellow way and kind of makes you weave your head around in a pleasant fashion.

Also of particular note is “Lebanese Blonde” by Thievery Corporation. First off, “Lebanese Blonde” is such a rad name for a song, and the song itself lives up to the expectation. In the movie the song plays while Large, Sam, and Large’s friend whose name I can’t remember right now walk into the hotel, and the filming is so cool in that section! The song really worked with the scene. It’s a cool song, and different, but still meshes well with the overall mix.

Another one of my favorites is “Let Go” by Frou Frou. Again, it grooves without being distracting.

A note about the movie Garden State – I just watched it for the first time yesterday, but the more I think about it, the more I like it. One of Josh’s friends told him he didn’t think Josh would like it because Josh is married. I think it’s funny that he said that, as if people who are married were born married and never had angst. Anyway, the cinematography of the movie was amazingly well done. There are some scenes of drug use going on at a party, and some suggestive adult content in one part, but the film treats those sections with a detached, surreal attitude that effectively conveys the emptiness and futility of those things as compared to real life and pure feeling. I thought that was a compelling factor in the film, but still renders it unsuitable for all audiences. Aside from that, the movie is dark, but a comedy, and the funny parts are really hilarious. It’s the kind of movie you can watch again and again. I’m not sure if it will enter my Top Five, but I’ll keep you posted.

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