Original Soundtrack

The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys

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AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson

One has to admire Jodie Foster's versatility. In Martin Scorsese's 1976 classic, Taxi Driver, the actress plays a teenage prostitute -- in 2002's The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys, she plays a Catholic nun. And Foster isn't the only one who is versatile. The soundtrack for The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys finds members of Rage Against the Machine (Brad Wilk) and Queens of the Stone Age (Joshua Homme and Nick Oliveri) performing music that doesn't sound anything like the bands that people identify them with. When one thinks of Rage, one thinks of politically charged rap-metal that is musically exciting even though some of the lyrics are hypocritical -- there's something very amusing about a band that endorses Maoist guerrillas like Peru's Shining Path (Sendero Luminoso) while cashing checks from Sony (an organization that is about as capitalist as it gets). But the members of Rage, for all their political contradictions, do have genuine musical talent, and the fact that Wilk is capable of doing something totally different on this CD speaks well of the drummer. Much of the disc is devoted to instrumental film music; Homme and Marco Beltrami do the composing, while Wilk, Homme, and Oliveri are among the main people who play the music. However, there are a few tracks that weren't written for the film -- Stephen Stills' "Do for the Others" (an early-'70s folk-rock classic) and Canned Heat's swampy blues-rock gem "On the Road Again" take listeners back to a time when Jodie Foster was a pre-teen and had yet to appear in Taxi Driver. Although the original music that dominates this soundtrack is well-written, this CD isn't for those who haven't seen The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys. This soundtrack is basically a souvenir for those who have actually seen (and enjoyed) the movie.

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