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The Darjeeling Limited OST

The Darjeeling Limited OST

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 3.5 out of 5

THE combination of director Wes Anderson and music supervisor Randall Poster has proved a winning formula through four movies (including The Royal Tenenbaums and The Life Aquatic) – and their fifth, The Darjeeling Limited is no exception.

The film follows the fortunes of three American brothers (played by Owen Wilson, Jason Schwartzman and Adrien Brody) who set off on a train voyage across India with a plan to find themselves and bond with each other – to become brothers again like they used to be.

Their “spiritual quest” veers rapidly off-course, however, due to events involving over-the-counter pain killers, Indian cough syrup and pepper spray, and they eventually find themselves stranded alone in the middle of the desert with 11 suitcases, a printer and a laminating machine.

The film is another masterful and emotionally enriching piece of work from Anderson and the soundtrack is reflective of this as well as the epic Indian backdrop.

In order to get the music right, Randall Poster – a veteran of over 70 movies, whose other work includes soundtracks for Jarhead and the forthcoming Bob Dylan “biopic” I’m Not There – travelled to Calcutta to gain access to the vast archives of one of the film’s main musical influences, Satyajit Ray.

He also assembled some classic cuts from bands like The Kinks and The Rolling Stones to provide an inspiring and wonderfully diverse blend of traditional Indian music and 70s rock that makes for a truly eclectic listen.

Highlights include The Kinks’ classics This Time Tomorrow and Strangers, both of which feature prominently on the trailer, The Rolling Stones’ Play With Fire (which comes at a cracking moment in the film), and Peter Sarstedt’s wonderfully eccentric Where Did You Go To My Lovely (which will probably bring a smile to the face once you’ve seen the film and appreciated its relevance).

Some of the traditional Indian tracks are also rather beautiful, even though they struggle to stand alone in their own right without a cinematic backdrop to play against.

Nevertheless, if you’ve been a fan of Anderson and Poster’s previous work, or have fallen in love with the movie (like me), then there’s plenty to savour here – not least in that first record from The Kinks.

Download picks: This Time Tomorrow, Where Did You Go To My Lovely, Play With Fire, Strangers

Track listing:

  1. Where Do You Go To My Lovely – Peter Sarstedt
  2. Title Music From Satyajit Ray’s Film Jalsaghar – Ustad Vilayat Khan
  3. This Time Tomorrow – The Kinks
  4. Title Music From Satyajit Ray’s Film Teen Kanya – Satyajit Ray
  5. Title Music From Merchant Ivory’s Film The Householder – Jyotirindra Moitra, Ustad Ali Akbar Khan
  6. Ruku’s Room From Satyajit Ray’s Film Joi Baba Felunath – Satyajit Ray
  7. Charu’s Theme From Satyajit Ray’s Film Charulata – Satyajit Ray
  8. Title Music From Merchant Ivory’s Film Bombay Talkie – Shankar-Jaikishan
  9. Montage From Nityananda Datta’s Film Baksa Badal – Satyajit Ray
  10. Prayer (Traditional) – Jodphur Sikh Temple Congregation
  11. Farewell To Earnest From Merchant Ivory’s Film The Householder – Satyajit Ray
  12. Suite Bergamasque: 3. Clair De Lune – Alexis Weissenberg
  13. Typewriter, Tip, Tip, Tip From Merchant Ivory’s Film Bombay Talkie (Sung By Kisore Kumar & Asha Bhosle) – Kisore Kumar, Asha Bhosle
  14. Memorial (Traditional) – Narlia Village Troubadour
  15. Strangers – The Kinks
  16. Praise Him (Traditional) – Udaipur Convent School Nuns And Students
  17. Symphony No. 7 In A (Op. 92) Allegro Con Brio – Fritz Reiner And The Chicago Sympnony Orchestra
  18. Play With Fire – The Rolling Stones [Mono Version]
  19. Arrival In Benares From Merchant Ivory’s Film The Guru – Ustad Vilayat Khan
  20. Powerman – The Kinks
  21. Les Champs – Elysees-Joe Dassin