Defying the trend of shoving a bunch of songs together for unit-shifting, the soundtrack to the Bill Murray movie The Life Aquatic With Steve Zissou is a cohesive and entertaining collection of songs. Sven Libaek's score pieces are remarkable, from the dreamy jazz of "Shark Attack Theme" to the watery, hypnotic "Open Sea Theme," while Mark Mothersbaugh's offerings are as consistently good as ever. From lilting horn orchestrations ("Loquasto International Film Festival") to bright beautiful pieces ("Let Me Tell You About My Boat"), Mothersbaugh triumphs. Filmmaker Wes Anderson contrasts such instrumentals with outstanding '70s rock choices like Iggy & the Stooges' proto-punk Molotov "Search and Destroy," Devo's "Gut Feeling," and a pair of Hunky Dory-extracted David Bowie classics like the rollicking "Queen Bitch" and the somber brilliance of "Life on Mars?" A second version of the latter, sung in Portuguese by Seu Jorge, is one of five absurd but likable Bowie covers, making for an eclectic but compelling collection.
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AllMusic Review by John D. Luerssen