Sunday, February 6, 2011

High Fidelity

Like a great mix tape, the soundtrack to High Fidelity feels like it was assembled by a true music fanatic. Interspersing selections from cult favorites both old (Love, the 13th Floor Elevators) and new (Smog, Stereolab), it provides a window into the mind of the film's main character, a record store owner who's better able to express his love for a rare 45 than for his longtime girlfriend. --Steven Stolder

Nick Hornby's novel about a middle-aged, obsessive record-store owner and his struggle with growing up in an adult world indifferent to the finer points of soul music was a sharp commentary on life, love, and a decades-long affair with popular music. If any movie has to have a decent soundtrack it's this one. And it does. Perhaps a little light on soul (Stevie Wonder is a hip pick, but how about Arthur Alexander or even Otis Redding?), it specializes in cult and indie bands that should be familiar to many. The Velvet Underground, Love, the 13th Floor Elevators, and the Kinks honor the old school, while Royal Trux, Stereolab, and Smog represent the newest wave. Elvis Costello appears with a strong pick from an odd era (early '80s), and his greatest imitator, John Wesley Harding, is featured as well. This probably should have been a box set--you end up wanting more.--Rob O'Connor

1. You're Gonna Miss Me - 13th Floor Elevators
2. Everybody's Gonna Be Happy - The Kinks
3. I'm Wrong About Everything - John Wesley Harding
4. Oh! Sweet Nuthin' - The Velvet Underground
5. Always See Your Face - Love
6. Most Of The Time - Bob Dylan
7. Fallen For You - Shiela Nicholls
8. Dry The Rain - The Beta Band
9. Shipbuilding - Elvis Costello & The Attractions
10. Cold Blooded Old Times - Smog
11. Let's Get It On - Jack Black
12. Lo Boob Oscillator - Stereolab
13. Inside Game - Royal Trux
14. Who Loves The Sun - The Velvet Underground
15. I Believe (When I Fall In Love It Will Be Forever) - Stevie Wonder

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