ALBUM REVIEW: VARIOUS – TWILIGHT BREAKING DAWN PART II SOUNDTRACK

TWILIGHT

The curtain has fallen on the Twilight series with the film, Breaking Dawn Part II. But as the official soundtrack proves, the party isn’t over just yet. This compilation looks set to follow in the footsteps of its predecessors and top charts thanks to its new and exclusive material and choice cuts from talented, independent artists.

Whether you call yourself a fan of this particular vampire saga or not, there’s no denying that the soundtracks have offered some interesting material over the years. In the past, these albums have boasted the likes of Thom Yorke, Muse, Death Cab For Cutie and plenty more.

The final instalment sees a greater focus on lesser-known acts (with the exception of Green Dayand yet, the set still manages to retain a key strength- conveying the complex array of emotions detailed in the movies. This time around the events include but are not limited to: vampire transformations, romance, drama, fun times, fight-to-the-death battles and final swansongs. It is rather intense listening, to say the least.

The record’s lead single is Green Day’s “The Forgotten”. Unfortunately, this one seems to do just as the title prescribes because it is a middle-of-road piano ballad. This one sees some whiny vocals coupled with a sound that plays out too much like a rip-off of Oasis (and we all know who they were trying to emulate). It certainly lacks the punch of their heavier material and for this reviewer who remembers “Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life)” used in all those final Seinfeld promos, this one fails to hold a candle anywhere near that.

Thankfully, the indie artists tend to fair a whole lot better and if we’re honest, they completely upstage the trio. A special mention should go out to St. Vincent with “The Antidote”. This is a brilliant number worth the price of the record alone. It has dirty riffs like a Muse track and also some breathy and sultry female vocals. There is a drumbeat clipping the almighty guitar-work and you can even hear an element of Ladytron in the mix. Wow.

Ellie Goulding and Feist are two other ladies in fine voice here. The former singer’s “Bittersweet” is a ballad with a percussive stretch and an electronic beat. She challenges the listener and her love not to forget her in the aftermath of the next morning, and sounds as powerful as Florence Welch. The latter offers “Fire In The Water” and manages to fill her song with soul, an echo and an almost indescribable, cinematic quality.

This record does put a greater emphasis on electro-pop and dance-infused numbers than the previous instalments (heck, even Passion Pit open the proceedings). But there’s no denying that the songs also convey a sense of it being the end of an era as there is a lot of wistful nostalgia in the form of soft, folk balladry from James Vincent McMorrow and his ilk in the dreamlike, “Ghosts”. There is also another big, romantic ballad courtesy of two of Twilight’s actors, Paul McDonald and Nikki Reed in “All I’ve Ever Needed”.

For the readers that enjoyed Christina Perri’s “A Thousand Years Part One” from the previous soundtrack, you’ll be pleased to know that this has been polished up and re-written as the violin-heavy “A Thousand Years Part Two”. Closing the set is also a cut from the film’s score, “Plus Que Ma Propre Vie” by composer, Carter Burwell.

The Breaking Dawn Pt II O.S.T. is another epic addition to the musical saga known as the Twilight phenomena. There are lots of ambient memories and hushed tones that come across as haunting, bittersweet and filled with just the right amount of gothic angst. If you pause, you will feel the heavy heart and dark mood punctuating the sounds of this closing chapter. And we should all embrace the fact that the franchise’s musical director, Alexandra Patsavas has again given us a consistent offering full of quality acts and a sense of fifty shades of emotion.

Originally published on 3 December 2012 at the following website: http://www.the59thsound.com/twilight—breaking-dawn-part-2-soundtrack-03122012.html

Visit The 59th Sound’s homepage at: http://www.the59thsound.com/

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