NME.COM

From Bono to Beck, the best musician's soundtracks

  • Alex Turner made his first foray into the soundtrack world writing songs for friend Richard Ayoade’s feature debut Submarine. Ayode had directed the videos for Arctic Monkeys singles ‘Flourescent Adolescent’.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Daft Punk were lifelong fans of Disney’s classic video game adventure film, so they jumped at the chance to provide the music for last year’s sequel Tron: Legacy. The duo appear in the movie as robot DJs at the End Of The Line club.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Not content with playing the lead role in Lars Von Trier's dense and challenging film 'Dancer In The Dark, Bjork also co-authored the classical-tinged soundtrack. The song 'I've Seen It All', with Thom Yorke, was nominated for an Oscar for Best Song.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Despite Adam Green and Kimya Dawson having disbanded, The Moldy Peaches got a new lease of life when their songs, including ‘Anybody Else But You’ were used in Diablo Cody’s teen comedy Juno. Dawson provided original songs to the film.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Eminem’s one and only lead movie role came in 8 Mile, playing Rabbit, a young Detroit rapper closely based on himself. He also dominates the soundtrack, and came up with one of his most iconic songs, ‘Lose Yourself’, which became the first hip-hop song to win an Oscar.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Sometimes a movie’s music overshadows the film completely, and that’s the case with the Bee Gees and Saturday Night Fever. The film itself is gritty and downbeat, but all that’s outshined by the shimmering falsetto harmonies that run through it.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • James Murphy took time out from LCD Soundsystem’s long goodbye to compose 12 songs to soundtrack Ben Stiller’s moving comedy drama Greenberg. The soundtrack also features music from Albert Hammond Jr, The Sonics, Galaxie 500, Nite Jewel and Duran Duran.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Simon and Garfunkel raised the bar for original soundtracks in 1968 when they provided the music for The Graduate, the film which made a star of Dustin Hoffman. It features iconic songs like ‘The Sound Of Silence’, ‘April Come She Will’ and ‘Mrs Robinson’.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Kid n’Play played themselves in classic rebel comedy House Party, so it was only right and proper that they should appear on the hip-hop soundtrack, alongside greats of the day like Flavor Flav, LL Cool J and Full Force.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Madonna starred as bad girl Nikki Finn in this 1987 screwball comedy. The film wasn’t up to much, but her soundtrack provided classic hits like ‘Who’s That Girl’, ‘Causing A Commotion’ and ‘The Look Of Love’.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Jack White starred as a Confederate soldier in Anthony Minghella’s American civil war epic Cold Mountain, alongside Nicole Kidman and Jude Law. He also contributed four songs to the soundtrack, scoring a hit with ‘Wayfaring Stranger’.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Justice went all multimedia in 2008 for their documentary film and live album, the punningly titled A Cross The Universe. Directed by Romain Gravais, the film details the band’s life on the road across America, and the soundtrack comes from a San Francisco show, plus original music.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • When Spike Jonze turned children’s fantasy novel Where The Wild Things Are into a movie there was only one person he was going to turn to for the music, former squeeze Karen O. “I guess there is a childlike innocence about my music or my persona that he always just kind of dialled into,” she said.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Of all the classic Blaxploitation soundtracks to emerge in the 70s, Isaac Hayes’ one for cop drama Shaft is the one everybody remembers. The ‘Theme From Shaft,’ with its wah-wah intro, is now cinematic shorthand for a certain kind of atmospheric cool, referenced endlessly in TV and film.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Elton John’s soundtrack to cartoon classic The Lion King burned the film into history as well as giving his career a new lease of life, from the kid-friendly fun of ‘I Just Can’t Wait To Be King’ and the rousing ballad ‘Circle Of Life’. The songs were later adapted for a stage musical.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • The soundtrack process worked in reverse for Tommy, The Who’s tale of the deaf, dumb and blind kid that sure plays a mean pinball. The original concept album from 1969 was later adapted into a film directed by Ken Loach, and then later emerged as a stage musical in 1992.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Edgar Wright’s comic book adaptation Scott Pilgrim Versus The World follows the surreal adventures of the slacker bass player for ‘kind of crappy’ alt.rock band Sex Bob-Omb. To bring the band to life, Wright called on the services of none other than Beck to come up with some suitably crappy songs.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • The Flaming Lips sci-fi film Christmas On Mars was in shadowy development for years. As well as writing and starring in the surreal adventure, they also scored an electronic instrumental soundtrack. Sample track title: ‘The Gleaming Armament Of Marching Genitalia’. Nice.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Tim Burton’s 1989 Batman movie forever banished memories of the camp 1960s TV series with his dark re-imagining of The Dark Knight. Prince’s taut, funky soundtrack became just as iconic, spawning hits like ‘Partyman’ and ‘Batdance’.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Trent Reznor won the Oscar for his dark, ambient soundtrack to David Fincher’s Facebook movie The Social Network and ushered in the next phase of his post-Nine Inch Nails career. The score was created with Atticus Ross and reworks tracks from the pair’s collaboration ‘Ghosts I-IV’.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Whitney Houston’s 1992 soundtrack to The Bodyguard became the biggest-selling of all time, shifting a massive 42million copies and scoring her biggest hit with her cover of Dolly Parton’s ‘I Will Always Love You’, alongside ‘I Have Nothing’ and ‘Queen Of The Night’.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • REM wrote their smash hit ‘Man On The Moon’ about US comedian Andy Kaufman, and in 1999 they took their obsession further, producing Milos Forman’s movie about his life. They remained heavily involved with the soundtrack, and launched their comeback single ‘The Great Beyond’ on it.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011

  • Prince’s sixth album formed the soundtrack to his acting debut Purple Rain, in which the megastar played a struggling Minneapolis musician known as ‘The Kid’. But the album remains one of his best-loved and spawned three number one singles: ‘Let’s Go Crazy’, ‘Purple Rain’ itself and ‘When Doves Cry’.

    Photo:

    Added: 17 Mar 2011