Planet Terror, Robert Rodriguez's half of the 2007 double-feature exploitation celebration Grindhouse, has a very different soundtrack than Quentin Tarantino's Death Proof. Like any other QT soundtrack, Death Proof relies on existing music, cherry-picked from obscure pop, soul, and soundtrack records, but Rodriguez is a D.I.Y.-er right down to assembling his own scores (albeit with some assistance from Graeme Revell here). Here, he extends his John Carpenter tribute right down to the icy, grimy synth scores that fueled films like Escape from New York (of course, Carpenter also did his own music, just like Rodriguez). To that basic electronic bed, Rodriguez adds some of his own flair -- some heavy metal guitars, motifs borrowed from spaghetti Westerns, some Texas blues, sometimes putting it all together into a mélange that sounds strikingly like early-'90s industrial-pop -- that gives it a knowing postmodernist spin, and then he adds a couple of key musical moments from his film (his star Rose McGowan singing a torchy version of "You Belong to Me," Nouvelle Vague's version of the Dead Kennedys' "Too Drunk to ****") to finish it all off. It all adds up to a clever, entertaining soundtrack, one that may not be as compulsively listenable as Death Proof (after all, that's all pop songs and this is primarily score) but one that captures the vibe of its film just as well as its companion.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
feat: Nouvelle Vague