16 FEBRUARY 20, 2004
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Though the 'Queer Eye' soundtrack
might seem like a clever marketing device,
it's also a catchy treasure of dance beats.
The 'Eyes' have it
mm* * *- '
FROM A BUSINESS PERSPECTIVE,
THE "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy"
soundtrack is easy money.
Just follow a few easy steps: Take a hit
show that most everyone loves, slap a picture of the five leading men on the cover,
add an extended version of the theme
song to start off the album, and fill up
the rest of the running time with tracks
that are (for the most part) unrelated to
the series, but might appeal to a general
audience. Shake gently, and voila!
People will buy this CD, released Feb.
10, because they like the show, and the
bands that contribute tracks get some
exposure. Everyone goes home a winner.
(A book — "Queer Eye for the Straight
Guy: The Fab 5's Guide to Looking Better,
Cooking Better, Dressing Better, Behaving
Better, and Living Better" — also was
released on Feb. 10.)
But when consumers bring this music
home and peel off the cellophane, they
might realize that this is a CD by a bunch of
artists they don't actually know much
So, aside from being a profitable venture, the real question is, does this record
have any substance?
The surprising answer is that a good
portion of the "Queer Eye" audience will
likely be enchanted by the tracks that the
producers have selected. For the most
part, the songs are big on beats and
inspire people to move to the dance floor.
The CD offers unit-shifting, bouncy
anthems from Duran Duran, Prophet
Omega and Basement Jaxx that are custom made for a club environment.
Although it's almost always dance-oriented, the mood shifts from light and peppy
to intense and dark as the album goes on.
WILDLIFE STARTS THINGS OFF WITH
a full version of the show's theme song,
"All Things (Just Keep Getting Better)."
As with all TV themes that end up getting
played on the radio (think "I'll Be There
For You" from "Friends"), the full version
of the song is familiar, catchy and utterly
forgettable since you're already sick of it
before you hear the whole thing.
Aside from the "All Things," careful listeners may recognize some of the songs
from the TV show. OK GO's "You're So
Damn Hot" appeared in the episode where
straight guy Richard (the one with the
toupee) was preparing for his new look
sans hairpiece. For the most part, though,
the tracks seem to come out of nowhere
and if they have been featured on the
show, you aren't likely to recognize them.
Sting seems completely confused and
The Queer Eye soundtrack, released Feb. 10, stands
on its own merits, despite the antics of the Tab 5,'
Ted AHen (left), Jai Rodriguez, Carson Kressley, Thorn
Fflfcia and Kyan Douglas. (Photo courtesy of Bravo)
out of place on "Never Coming Home."
Backed by a tame bass and handclap beat,
he half-raps, half-warbles his way
through an aimless track that never takes
The iconic Kylie Minogue makes an
appearance with a Chemical Brothers
remix of her track "Slow." The song is
full of electronic bleeps and, thankfully,
devoid of a throbbing beat, but it isn't the
best techno track on the CD.
The collaboration between
Fischerspooner and Billy Squier on
"Everybody Wants You to Emerge" is
more interesting. It's a techno song with
dark melodies and eerie female vocals.
"You're So Damn Hot," along with
Junior Senior's "Move Your Feet," are the
two best tracks on the collection. OK
GO's track is its most rocking — a power
pop anthem driven by keyboards and guitars. The band comes off as Weezer gone
new wave and, while it stands out as atypical among its dance club-oriented company, its melody and carefree attitude
make it fit with the "Queer Eye" vibe.
The mood on the "Queer Eye" soundtrack is different than that of the show, a
weekly hour of energy and fun. Despite
having a few embedded sound clips from
the show and an unlisted track of Jai and
Ted freestyling, this is a solid collection
of dance-rock tracks that deserves to be
judged on its own merits.
d MORE INFO
Music from 'Queer Eye for the Straight Guy1