A simpler, sunnier soundtrack than the previous Shrek outings, Shrek the Third delivers more of the franchise's expected mix of classic songs, covers, and a handful of new songs. Not surprisingly, the vintage tracks are the best, chief among them the Ramones' "Do You Remember Rock 'n' Roll Radio?," Harry Chapin's "Cat's in the Cradle," and Led Zeppelin's "Immigrant Song." However, the older songs are also, by and large, more playful and appropriate for a kids' movie than many of the newer tracks; Wings' "Live and Let Die" is a reminder of how over the top mainstream rock hits could be. As far as Shrek the Third's more current songs go, Wolfmother's "Joker and the Thief" comes the closest to matching the energy and presence of the vintage tracks, even if it's not nearly as inspired (especially compared to Zep, of course). Fergie's cover of Heart's "Barracuda" is basically karaoke but still surprisingly good -- and a reminder that she's a good singer when she's given good material. The Eels contribute two mellow, cheerfully bittersweet tracks, "Royal Pain" and "Losing Streak," which set the tone for the feel-good singer/songwriter pop of Matt White's "Best Days" and Trevor Hall's "Other Ways." The soundtrack closes with Shrek-specific songs like Maya Rudolph and Rupert Everett's duel/duet "Final Showdown" (which quotes lyrics from Queen's "Bohemian Rhapsody") and Eddie Murphy and Antonio Banderas' "Thank You (Falettin Me Be Mice Elf Again)," which young fans of the movie will no doubt love. Shrek the Third is a fun but slight soundtrack that only die-hard Shrek fans really need.
AllMusic Review by Heather Phares