I am not going to even argue that the 90s were the only time that quirky was embraced in music, but I feel like the early and mid 90s were a time where quirky worked much more than in the 20 or so years preceding the time. I say this because Ed’s Next Move is filled with two types of music, Jazzy score and quirky pop songs.
I honestly don’t have a lot to say about the score cues and music other than they work well in the film and work well on their own. Too many times with out the visuals that score music is written to and for it falls flat and fails to connect. The score music for Ed’s Next Move is one of those cases where the score music can stand on it’s own and I can see that it might be ideal for around the house, playing in the car or the backyard cookout.
The real reason that I own the soundtrack is the songs that are mostly part of the film. I noted in my review of the film that Callie Thorne plays a musician and there are a couple of scenes of her with the band, Ed’s Redeeming Qualities. ERQ had been around since the late 80s and built a small following and were covered by The Breeders on their big hit album Last Splash. The film and the soundtrack make use of a couple of their strange off kilter story songs and includes the additional vocals of Callie Throne on the song More Bad Things… it’s fun music and while too many of those 90s quirky bands (King Missile anyone?) seem to have lost any kind of luster, the ERQ tunes still find their way onto my iPod regularly.
The last tune of note for me on the album is the Comedians hyper literate history nerd pop opus, Tea & Sympathy. Charting the last great era of the British Empire the song is a world history lesson in 4 minutes. It’s impressive in that not only is the narrative kept, but also the pop structure of the song remains intact and never takes a backseat to the lyrics. It’s driven in a mode that never get’s too cutesy or preachy. I haven’t looked to see if there is anything by The Comedians, but now I am curious and will have to take a look.
Obviously this is one of my personal favorite soundtracks and I wish that like the film it had gotten more attention. It’s worth checking out for Tea & Sympathy and the ERQ tracks…. And I like the think it’s the kind of album that some outsider teen might trip over in a discount bin somewhere take it home and love it.
Film Review HERE