Songs From the Movie
As far as movies go there’s not much more tired and boring than American indie films that deal with “life” and “relationships.” What’s so compelling about disaffected middle-class folks and their everyday problems in the ’00s that hasn’t been rehashed countless times by filmmakers in the ’80s and ’90s? I haven’t seen Fortunes, the film from which this soundtrack draws its songs, but judging by the publicity stills in the booklet and the tone of the music, it might as well be Beautiful Girls or a Kevin Smith movie. Of course, having Tobin Sprout, a former member of ’90s indie stalwart Guided By Voices, compose the majority of the music and select the rest of score, there’s a chance you’ll up with something that sounds at least slightly dated. And that’s exactly what happens. Most of Sprout’s new songs feel like outtakes from Bee Thousand with mainstream ’90s production values. Only “Old Gray House” and “Snow Flanges” provide a bit of respite from the appropriated British Invasion sounds running rampant through his songwriting. Even worse is Chris Day’s “Within Us All,” which feels like early ’90s Primal Scream or the Soup Dragons, stuck with a trashy Euro-club vibe. Ronald Raskin’s “Hide Away” fares well in its restrained beginnings, but loses focus as he heaps instruments on toward the end. “Snake Eyes” by The Mulchmen is a pleasant surf rock surprise that thankfully breaks the mold, but appears much too early on the track list to keep the latter half of the disc from tanking. Perhaps the film is a good one and my backward interpretation through the soundtrack is incorrect, but I’d say your best bet is to steer clear of both.
Pravda Records: www.pravdamusic.com