After the Blue Swede-thumping Guardians of the Galaxy soundtrack got us hooked on a feeling, it was obvious that James Gunn and music supervisor Dave Jordan were gonna come through with more classic goodies for the sequel. Voila. They did it.
It’s an excellent trip through ’70s rock that’s 90% upbeat, with a B-sider from Cat Stevens as the emotional anchor. Once again, Gunn and Jordan have found a sweet spot of well-loved-but-not-super-famous songs–an alchemical mash-up that should have people swaying in their seats without feeling overwhelmed by cliche.
According to a Rolling Stone interview with Gunn, many of the picks are the director’s personal favorites. ELO’s “Mr. Blue Sky” appears near the beginning of the film with what Gunn calls “the most hugely insane shot I’ve ever done,” but Looking Glass’ “Brandy (You’re a Fine Girl)” opens Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 to provide a backboard to an emotional sequence (more family drama?). Fleetwood Mac’s “The Chain” is meant to symbolize the Guardians, and George Harrison’s “My Sweet Lord” should introduce Star-Lord’s (Chris Pratt) father, Ego (Kurt Russell), although I suspect Cat Stevens’s “Father and Son” may also play a role in adding some sonic coloring to their relationship.
A billion cool points to Gunn for not picking Harry Chapin’s severely overused “Cat’s in the Cradle.”
Gunn was also keen to send fans Googling for deep cuts and lifting older, semi-forgotten tunes up the charts, which you may have already done with Silver’s “Wham Bang Shang-a-Lang” (suggested by a fan) and Aliotta Haynes Jeremiah’s “Lake Shore Drive” (a childhood favorite of Gunn’s with wonderfully suspicious initials…).
Have fun rocking out the rest of the week. What all are you adding to your playlist? All of it? Sounds good.
What role will the Infinity Stones play in Thor: Ragnarok?