"100% movie music," reads a sticker on the shrink-wrap covering the CD jewel box for the soundtrack to The 11th Hour, a documentary about global warning. The point seems to be to alert potential buyers, who might turn the album over and see a different artist credited for nearly every track, then assume that this was one of those soundtrack albums containing pop recordings instead of the musical score. In fact, these artists, among them Cocteau Twins and Sigur Rós, turn in ambient and electronica tracks that are used for the background music to the film. The results are alternately soothing and eerie, appropriate for a movie that concerns itself with what another documentary on the same subject, Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth, calls "the tipping point," that point at which global warming becomes irreversible. Leonardo DiCaprio, narrating the film, lets viewers known that it's not too late, but the earth is, as the title says, in the 11th hour (before midnight, that is). For the most part, the underlying music is calm, but Mogwai's "Mogwai Fear Satan," coming late in the sequence, sounds like what a U2 jam might if Bono were 15 minutes late to a recording session. Lukas Haas' "Kemp" then ends the movie and album with a gentle acoustic coda.
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AllMusic Review by William Ruhlmann