Wind Up Records
The blockbuster action flick for February gets a twenty-song soundtrack of equal value, featuring a bevy of today’s biggest rock artists serving up the perfect compliment to a little crime fighting drama. With the exception of Evanescence, a female fronted electronimation newbie that’s getting an extra ounce of pressure from their Wind Up guardian, Daredevil: The Album is a veritable who’s who of top flight modern rock talent, ranging from million sellers to middle of the roaders seeking their next big break. While much of the material is tilted toward established artists of the rock and pop scene, there is also a handful of underground crossovers.
Fuel, The Calling and Saliva cut right to the chase. All three are on the lighter side of the moment, with a very earthy, melodic and slightly less adventuresome feel. Canada’s Nickelback, who not long ago struck pure gold with their chart topping “Silver Side Up,” subsequently gets the groove going with “Learn The Hard Way” – a track that’d make for a perfect pan shot through a crowded bar scene or our hero himself preparing for another evening’s window sill stroll. Former ’90s ghosts Chevelle seem primed for a comeback with “Until You’re Reformed,” a haunting contribution built on a slow and ominous presence backed by an explosive chorus – somewhat cliché in the context of the angst-rock of the ’90s revolution that never knew when to say when. And yes, here’s where a little emotional variety might go a long way.
I’ll go on record as saying the Hoobastank song stinks. They’ve gone from exciting band with potential to weekly stage players for Sunnyside’s Nursing community. Sleeper hit honors definitely go to an otherwise unassuming Palo Alto (“Fade Out / In”) who offer some very charged up, loose-collared pop with a catch the wind chorus, and Autopilot Off whose punky •Raise Your Rifles” is inconsistent with the tone and apparent theme of the movie, but it still manages to rock. If I didn’t have the inlay open in front of me here, I’d probably have forgotten what movie this was to begin with.
The soundtrack concludes with 12 Stones, who’ve logged more than a few miles in the appliance store video music sections; another newborn melodic rock legend that’s heavy on the lessons of their youth and big on the emo kick, ala Saliva, Soil, and Earshot. The overall mix is a step beneath prudish, but the song selection never strays far from the framework of the modern day action/drama superhero thriller love story that has suddenly made Spidey a big screen sensation. Overall, there’s a well picked variety of music going on that’s refreshingly clear and sets a distinguishable enough scene shift that we’re not cracked over the head time and again.