‘(500) Days of Summer’ – 5 Essential Soundtrack Cuts
Think of the '(500) Days of Summer' soundtrack as sort of a gateway to cool music you may not know about. Everyone has heard Hall & Oates' 'You Make My Dreams,' which anchors one of the movie's best and most famous scenes. But there are plenty of other musical treasures to be found in the 2009 movie -- from post-punk classics to modern-day scuzzy indie rock. Here are five essential cuts.
Clocking in at barely two minutes, 'Bad Kids' by Atlanta garage-rock punks Black Kids reflects the '(500) Days of Summer' soundtrack's anything-goes-as-long-as-its-good free-for-all. On one side, there's '60s relics like Simon & Garfunkel's nostalgic acoustic showpiece 'Bookends.' On the other, there's scruffy low-fi garage rock that just graces the surface of where this typically primal genre often goes.
The British band Doves have made four albums; their second, 'The Last Broadcast,' is the best. 'There Goes the Fear' was the first single from the 2002 record, a somewhat hazy and downright gorgeous blast of Britpop that builds to a big climatic finale ... sorta like what Coldplay do. But way more indie and a lot less cloying when you get right down to it.
There's a whole indie-pop movement in Canada based around the Broken Social Scene collective, which includes a wide variety of artists, like members of Metric and Stars and their most popular alum, Feist. 'Mushaboom,' named after a village in Nova Scotia, was originally on her second solo album. And like most of the music from Canada's indie-pop scene, it's springy, bouncy and full of gooey warmth. Dive in.
The Smiths show up twice on '(500) Days of Summer''s soundtrack -- actually three times, if you count the cover of 'Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want' by star Zooey Deschanel's group She & Him. This track from 1986's great 'The Queen Is Dead' album is typical Smiths: moody, mopey and melodic. And it's a great primer to one of the best British bands of the '80s.
Singer-songwriter Regina Spektor was born in Moscow but moved to New York City as a teenager. This culture clash has served her decidedly quirky music well. The strings-and-piano-guided 'Us' comes from her major-label debut, 'Soviet Kitsch,' and it serves as a lovely intro to the range of styles she plays around with, including baroque pop and indie folk.