Original Soundtrack

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Footloose Review

by James Christopher Monger

The soundtrack to 1984’s “dance against the man” teen hit Footloose stayed at the number one spot on the Billboard album charts for over two months, spewing out a handful of Top Ten singles that still make the rounds today. When director Craig Brewer announced his impending, 2011 remake of the film, fans were curious as to what would become of the music that was so integral to the original, and his answer was "I can promise Footloose fans that I will be true to the spirit of the original film.” Brewer came through on that promise, allowing all of the hits, along with some new cuts, from the original a place in his version of the film, but with one caveat; they’d be “countrified." That means that the opening lick from the iconic title track, made famous by Kenny Loggins, just got a whole lot “twangier,” thanks to country crooner (and part-time judge on the NBC talent show “The Voice”) Blake Shelton; Bonnie Tyler's cardio anthem “Holding Out for a Hero” turned into a post-breakup montage ballad for a future episode of MTV’s Teen Mom, courtesy of 15-year-old singer/songwriter Ella Me Bowen; Deniece Williams' bouncy synth pop confection “Let’s Hear It for the Boy” got spit out of the slick, Nashville country-pop machine by actress/singer Jana Kramer, encrusted with enough rhinestones to break Glen Campbell's horse in half, and “Almost Paradise,” made famous by Loverboy's headband-loving frontman Mike Reno and Heart’s Ann Wilson, still dissolves into a heap of quivering schmaltz, only this time around, newcomers Victoria Justice and Hunter Hayes get to strut and fret their hour upon the stage, hopefully before, like everything else on this soulless cash grab, are heard no more.

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