Various Artists - The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1
As soon as it was announced that Lorde was curating the soundtrack for The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1, it was clear that the folkier leanings of the previous two Hunger Games soundtracks were no more. In a way, it's fitting that the film's soundtrack is as much of a departure as to what came before, the film itself being quite different to previous installments. However, when you're thinking about a dystopian landscape, are Simon Le Bon's distorted vocals and hip hop beats the first sounds that come to mind? Look past any feelings of whether the soundtrack and film match though, and there's plenty to admire.
Lorde's two contributions are both excellent; the menacing 'Yellow Flicker Beat' is easily the album's highlight and also the most fitting of the film's often-relentless darker tone, while CHVRCHES' 'Dead Air' is electro pop-rock done right. Bat For Lashes' cover of Son Lux's 'Plan The Escape' is as haunting as you'd expect from Ms. Khan. There are a few filler tracks - Raury's 'Lost Souls' the biggest offender - but it's rarely dull due to the eclectic cast list. Fans may be disappointed by the absence of Jennifer Lawrence's rendition of 'The Hanging Tree' from the film but, overall, this is a successful attempt to mix things up.