Original Soundtrack

Hotel Rwanda

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AllMusic Review by

This collection, billed as "music from the film" rather than the soundtrack to Hotel Rwanda, the Terry George film starring Don Cheadle, features tracks by the Afro Celt Sound System with vocalist Dorothee Munyaneza -- who also performs her own compositions elsewhere -- Wyclef Jean with the hit "Million Voices," Deborah Cox, Yvonne Chaka Chaka, Tilly Key and Bernard Kabanda along with orchestra compositions by the multi-talented Andrea Guerra. As music, the sounds here feel as if they are inextricably tied to the images on screen. This is not a criticism, but the opposite. The selections here evoke a landscape that is profound, moving and deeply sorrowful in places. Certainly some titles like Rupert Gregson-Williams' "Interhamwe Attack" feels overblown because of the layers of programming, but the dynamic effect is unmistakable; it's more of a film cue than anything else and only a minor distraction. Elsewhere, such as on Cox's "Nobody Cares" produced by Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, the American urban touch is a stark contrast to the more African centered material but this is not a distraction, more poignantly, a meditation on how much we missed in relation to this human tragedy. Ultimately, this is a very fine compilation, one that bears repeated listening, but also one that provokes different feelings in the listeners where melancholy and sadness co-exist seamlessly with beauty.

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