[sic] Magazine

Sucker Punch [Soundtrack]

The best thing you can say about any movie soundtrack is that the songs all mesh together — even if they are from different artists.

And from the look of the movie Sucker Punch , it needs a butt-kicking soundtrack — something girly yet tough and wild. So that is pretty much what you get in the soundtrack: one part rousing rock’n’roll, one part ethereal floating pop, and one part psychedelic wildness. It sounds like it shouldn’t fit together at all, but it does.

It opens on a grand note with Emily Browning’s cover of ‘Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This),’ which begins as a soft pop anthem but quickly becomes tangled in dark twisting guitars and epic washes of electric violin. After that we get a strong serving of rock and pop music, with the lines between them blurred with fiery guitars and soaring epic melodies.

There’s the sizzling, yowling ‘Search and Destroy’ by Skunk Anansie ; the slow-swirling psychedelia of Yoav’s ‘Where Is My Mind?’; the sensual jazzy ‘Love is the Drug’ by Carla Gugino and Oscar Izaac ; the wildly energetic, epic remix of Bjork’s ‘Army of Me’; Alison Mosshart and Carl Azar’s hauntingly expansive rock anthem ‘Tomorrow Never Knows’; and Emily Browning’s bittersweet, violin-soaked lullaby ‘Asleep.’

The ultimate highlight: Emiliana Torrini’s trippy, blazing cover of ‘White Rabbit,’ which basically sums up the whole concept of the movie. The only downside is ‘I Want It All/We Will Rock You,’ which is basically hip-hop artist Armageddon (formerly of the Terror Squad ) rapping over Queen samples. It just doesn’t fit with the rest of the music.

The ‘Sucker Punch’ soundtrack is one of those soundtracks that you can enjoy independently of the movie. And even though most of the songs are from different artists (ranging from actress Emily Browning to Icelandic pop stars), they all have a unifying sound — very gritty around the edges, with lots of fiery rock’n’roll, but also with softer ethereal edges.

So expect lots of fiery electric guitars, psychedelic riffs, violins and blazing bass, usually woven into melodies that sound…. well, epic and action-packed. Some of the songs are pretty much instrumental, but the vocals are amazing as well — Skunk Anansi’s raw yowl, Torrini’s chilly accented voice, and Browning’s sleepy girlish soprano (“Some of them want to abuse you/some of them want to be abused…”) all mesh easily.

Regardless of whether you love or hate the movie, the ‘Sucker Punch’ soundtrack is a delight — an intense, uncoiling barrage.