Various Artists

Best of Cult Fiction

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EMI's Best of Cult Fiction compilations have long been a premium source for music written for or popularized by television and film hits of the past and present -- though haphazardly compiled, each set has delivered a wealth of pop classics and sound library obscurities that never fail to entertain on some essential if undeniably cheesy level. Assembling 55 tracks across two discs, Best of Cult Fiction is both the most haphazard and the most entertaining entry in the series to date -- all that's tying the individual recordings together is their eminence via vintage espionage and cop shows, or their use in the films of Quentin Tarantino. The film disc is largely a Cliffs Notes version of Tarantino's soundtracks -- at least one song from each of his features is included, including Reservoir Dogs' "Stuck in the Middle With You," Pulp Fiction's "Jungle Boogie," Jackie Brown's "Across 110th Street," and, best of all, Kill Bill's "'Green Hornet' Theme." The TV disc is far more impressive, especially to American ears not raised on BBC programs like Lovejoy and The Professionals -- it boggles the mind to consider that television theme songs were once so vibrant and genuinely funky.

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