Entertainment and Current Events

It Just Screams “Soundtrack”

I would say that “Heathens” by Twenty One Pilots is the most different song on the radio right now, probably because it isn’t about love or sex and it has a grunge vibe that hearkens back to the 1990s. The song is on the soundtrack of Suicide Squad, which I didn’t see because it is an action movie geared toward teenage boys and 20-something men (AKA a genre I am thoroughly sick of). Even before I knew the song had been on a movie soundtrack, I thought that it sounded appropriate for that purpose because of its dark, dramatic undertone and that weird crunchy guitar sound that got clearer and clearer during the song until it became “Watch it!”

I don’t know if “Heathens” was written specifically for the movie, but it certainly seems like it was. Suicide Squad is about a bunch of misfits from a secret government agency who are tasked with (big surprise—it’s a superhero movie) saving the world. They’re all crazy, they’re all “heathens,” and they’re all apparently ready to snap at the drop of a hat. I also imagined that “Heathens” would be the perfect song for a story I wrote, but the story takes place in 2012, and having a song from 2016 in the soundtrack would be just a tiny bit of an anachronism.

On a more negative note, it’s a little sad that “Heathens” won a Grammy for Best Rock Song when it seems to be light rock or rap-rock at best. What happened to the days of “Bullet With Butterfly Wings,” “Big Empty,” and “Better Man“? (Hey, allow me to have a little millennial nostalgia.) 🙂

5 thoughts on “It Just Screams “Soundtrack””

  1. Every now and then I’ll write a novel that has a soundtrack. For example, I can’t hear Saturn by Stevie Wonder without remembering how The Last Titan ends. But the big shocker (to me) is that my new redneck football novel includes Faith by George Michael. Why? You’ll have to read it to find out. (In the business, we call that a teaser.)

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    1. New NaNoWriMo2016 redneck football novel, I should say. I’m glad that self-editing is my favorite part of the process, because next year will be full of it. Gridiron is nowhere near being publishable. But I do remember when I fell in love with it, and it wasn’t when I tried to play Faith on my piano. But that reminds me, the other soundtrack is The Lonely Man, better known as the theme song to The Incredible Hulk. I play that one almost daily, just like the main character in Gridiron.

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      1. I make up soundtracks for my stories all the time, and I try to only play the songs when I’m writing or thinking about the story, otherwise the newness wears off.

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  2. If I had to guess, I’d say it probably was written for the movie, since it’s an exception on a soundtrack where pretty much everything else is classic rock and pop songs (Bohemian Rhapsody, You Don’t Own Me, House of the Rising Sun, etc. etc).

    Plus, this post reminded me about “Better Man,” which I hadn’t listened to in a while. Thanks. 🙂


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