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Young Adult OST Review

Young Adult OST

Review by Jack Foley

EVERY cool film needs a hip soundtrack to support it. I’ve written that before, I know… but it seems particularly appropriate for Young Adult, especially as it’s so nostalgia laced.

The film itself features a Golden Globe nominated Charlize Theron playing a character named Mavis Gary, a writer of teen literature who returns to her small hometown to reclaim her happily married high school sweetheart (Patrick Wilson).

It reunites the Juno team of director Jason Reitman and writer Diablo Cody and features an accompanying soundtrack that is packed with some of the leading names of ’90s alternative music, including Teenage Fanclub, whose track The Concept features prominently in the film.

In that sense, it’s a glorious nostalgia trip, particularly if your formative listening years hailed from that marvelous era!

We’re talking the likes of 4 Non Blondes’ What’s Up, which retains a cool disaffection to it; The Lemonheads’ seminal It’s A Shame About Ray (surely one of their finest moments) and Dinosaur Jr’s Feel The Pain, with all its grungy guitar brilliance and trademark feedback.

Better still is Cracker’s Low, an almighty indie-rock anthem that’s brimming with, sorry, cracking guitar riffs and a cool, sort of stoner vibe.

Also of note is the scuzz rock Seether, by Veruca Salt, while in stark contrast (and another musical era entirely) is the impossibly sweet When We Grow Up by Diana Ross.

The album is then completed with five minimalist instrumental versions of some of the era’s biggest alternative rock songs performed by Mateo Messina, which admittedly are more of an acquired taste but certainly still offer high curiosity value.

Of these instrumentals, Beck’s Where It’s At feels too restained, while Pearl Jam’s Even Flow is barely recognisable. But Soundgarden’s Black Hole Sun somehow works and is worth checking out.

Put together as a whole, however, this Young Adult soundtrack works wonders regardless of whether you’re planning to see the movie or not. Which you also should!

Read our review to find out exactly why…

The full tracklisting is:

  1. When We Grow Up – Diana Ross
  2. What’s Up – 4 Non Blondes
  3. Achin’ To Be – The Replacements
  4. It’s A Shame About Ray – The Lemonheads
  5. Seether – Veruca Salt
  6. The Concept – Teenage Fanclub
  7. Pledge Your Allegiance – Suicidal Tendencies
  8. Feel The Pain – Dinosaur Jr.
  9. Low – Cracker
  10. Why Buddy? – Rolfe Kent
  11. Epic – Mateo Messina (originally by Faith No More)
  12. Even Flow – Mateo Messina (Pearl Jam)
  13. Where It’s At – Mateo Messina (Beck)
  14. Big Me – Mateo Messina (Foo Fighters)
  15. Black Hole Sun – Mateo Messina (Soundgarden)

Young Adult was released across the UK and Ireland on February 3, distributed by Paramount Pictures UK.