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Mogwai - Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait OST

Mogwai, Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait, OST

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 4 out of 5

ANYONE who saw Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait when it was released in cinemas earlier this year will know what to expect from this soundtrack.

The film followed the sometimes hypnotic magic of retired footballing genius Zinedine Zidane as he played a 90-minute game for Real Madrid. It was sort of a love affair with the player, whose celebrated skills are world-renowned (in spite of his short temper).

Who better, then, to provide a soundtrack to compliment such imagery and trickery? Why, Mogwai, of course, the modern-day masters of epic, spaced out rock, whose laidback soundscapes worked hand-in-hand with the images on screen.

Now released in official soundtrack form, this composition is capable of appealing to both cine fans and Mogwai devotees alike. You don’t need to have seen the film to appreciate it.

Mogwai’s music has always had the power to either soothe or rouse the senses. In recent years, they have certainly mellowed and, as such, this is very much a slow-burner of shimmering intensity.

Indeed, there are times when the album borders on ambience, such is the quiet intensity of the finger-picked semi-acoustic guitars and padded sticks that feature on tracks like Wake Up and Go Berserk or Black Spider (a former single).

This is serene, seductive music that provides a form of mind-massage. It’s occasionally a little too ponderous for its own good but there are tracks that genuinely enthrall with their beauty.

So, whether imagining Zidane on the field conjuring some more footballing magic with those graceful feet, or placing yourself in some distant dreamscape or a distant shore, you’re sure to find plenty to soothe and inspire on this captivating musical journey.

Mogwai fans, especially, are sure to find themselves in some kind of seventh heaven, so long as they’re not expecting too many of the fireworks that were associated with some of the earliest work.

This is more about poise and grace than firing any musical (or football) volleys.

Track listing:

  1. Black Spider
  2. Terrific Speech 2
  3. Wake Up And Go Berserk
  4. Terrific Speech
  5. 7:25
  6. Half Time
  7. I Do Have Weapons
  8. Time And A Half
  9. It Would Have Happened Anyway
  10. Black Spider 2