Ayo Jegede
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June 11, 2003
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Rock Music Reviews
Matrix Reloaded Soundtrack

Soundtrack: 5- judging by the familiar roster of musicians for this album barring one or two exceptions, i'd say that it's a disappointment. of course simply arguing that using the same musicians leads to the same result is a bit silly since Mechanical Animals-era Manson is different from his new work and White Pony-era Deftones is different from their recent one, but that's just it: if the music directors understood that soundtracks are a kind of mixological science of individuality then i don't think they would have decided to [perhaps randomly] use the same artists. though Manson's 'Rock is Dead' on the prior soundtrack was a signature and a strange fit with the numerous electronica pieces, 'The New Shit' is nothing more than re-hashed components with no sturdy goal and no real impetus and thus feels like a song with overdone resentment. the inclusion of mediocre artists like Linkin Park, Unloco, and P.O.D. also shows that the music itself wasn't even on the agenda at times. there's no overriding thematic drive to 'Session' and 'Bruises' while 'Zion' strives too hard to be Matrix-esque. if it weren't for Rob Dougan's 'Furious Angels' or the Oakenfold pieces then this soundtrack would have been a total flop.

Score: 8- the '8' ranking is not really meant for the Don Davis score which, although not bad, isn't spectacular and doesn't really promote a new listening or viewing axis for The Matrix Reloaded (i.e. it still feels like The Matrix). but Juno Reactor's tribal and goa injections in what would have been a noticeably bland score gives the entire movie life and fury. 'Teahouse,' 'Mona Lisa Overdrive,' and 'Burly Brawl' all combine the refined and almost ancient orchestral elements of Don Davis with the modern infusion of Juno Reactor's eclectic mix. the results are impressive and also create a nice harmony with the film's fight and chase scenes. say what you will about the movie (i personally liked it a lot) but the score is pretty damn good, maybe even surpassing its predecessor.

Release date: May 6, 2003
Label: Maverick
Rating: 6.5 / 10

[RMR]