Hunger Games Soundtrack

March 21, 2012 by staff 

Hunger Games Soundtrack, You wouldn’t want to live in Panem, the world created by Suzanne Collins in her bestselling novel The Hunger Games. Apart from the Capitol and District 1, life in the other 11 districts is brutal — with little food, amenities and basic human rights.

Music, for much of Panem and District 12 tribute Katniss Everdeen, isn’t so much a luxury as a precious resource, only to be used sparingly and for moments of significance — such as comforting a dying soul or marking the end of another day of gruelling labour.

So, in a way, it’s somewhat incongruous — if not wrong — that the cinematic version of The Hunger Games, in theatres Friday, boasts a 16-song soundtrack, including Taylor Swift’s haunting “Safe & Sound,” Neko Case’s torchy “Nothing to Remember” and The Low Anthem’s whispery, wandering “Lover Is Childlike.”

Then again, Hollywood and the music industry just can’t resist the opportunity to cash in. Mercifully, these songs aren’t used as background to the bloodbath. Only Arcade Fire’s “Abraham’s Daughter” is featured in the film and only during the end credits. Sadly, it’s one of the Montreal indie-rock act’s weaker tunes — a military-style march with Regine Chassagne’s childlike vocals, a portent of what’s to come in the two sequels.

Think of the remaining 15 songs as inspired by The Hunger Games — many of which are of the country, folk and roots variety, as is producer T Bone Burnett’s natural habitat. (He supervised the bluegrass-flavoured soundtrack to O Brother, Where Art Thou?, which won the Grammy for album of the year in 2001.) Under Burnett’s watchful eye, he ensures The Hunger Games Soundtrack: Songs From District 12 and Beyond is a bleak and simple collection filled with a quiet strength — an accurate representation of the district’s impoverished residents and Katniss Everdeen. Standouts include The Carolina Chocolate Drops’ “Daughter’s Lament,” which feels like an old traditional Celtic-folk ditty about Katniss Everdeen “who never more did sing;” and The Civil Wars’ “Kingdom Come,” a feverish duet starring John Paul White’s quivering warbles and Joy Williams’ aching pipes. “Don’t you fret my dear / It will all be over soon / I’ll be waiting here / For you,” they sing.

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