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Vampire Diaries - Original Television Soundtrack Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 8.5
Musicianship 8.75
Lyrics 8.25
Production 8.5
Creativity 9
Lasting Value 9.25
Reviewer Tilt 9.5
Final Verdict: 88%
Member Ratings
Vocals 0.25
Musicianship 0.25
Lyrics 0.25
Production 0.25
Creativity 0.25
Lasting Value 0.25
Reviewer Tilt 0.25
Average: 3%

Vampire Diaries - Original Television Soundtrack

Reviewed by: Gregory Robson (10/30/10)
The Vampire Diaries - Official Television Soundtrack
Record Label: EMI
Release Date: Oct. 12, 2010


There's no way around it, TV soundtracks are some of the best places to find new music. Ever since Dawson's Creek (and probably before), music placement in TV series has become something of the place to turn to find your favorite bands not on radio and or MTV/VH1/Fuse. It is for this very reason that a mediocre TV show such as The WB's The Vampire Diaries has one of the year's most engaging soundtracks, if not, the most. Because more often than not, a TV soundtrack features a host of unknowns, the first half of this review is devoted to them. And hot damn, they are something.

Whether it's the slow-moving desperation of the dense and dark "All You Wanted," from Sounds Under Radio, or the richly layered slice of lush pop from Mads Langer, there's very little about the disc that's uninspired. Stateless' "Bloodstream (Vampire Diaries remix)," makes its claim as one of the disc's true peaks as it mixes wintry piano with electro-loops, whirring samples and undeniably compelling vocals. Equal parts crooning, intoxicating and timeless, "Bloodstream," is an indelible and highly emotional exercise that will be felt long after the disc ends. Jason Walker's "Down," is a timeless ballad anchored by piano and his luxuriant vocals.

Howls' "Hammock," dresses up an urban club beat with engaging songwriting, while Sky Ferreira's "Obsession," is a garage-rock slab of swagger, chanting and unforgettable magnetism. There's an energy at work here that is all-consuming and electrifying. The last of the unknown is Digital Daggers who offer up a spartan and angelic, albeit feathery take on the Tears for Fears classic "Head Over Heels." Whereas most covers can often try too hard to imitate or try too hard to revitalize, this version is a fine medium between the two. There's enough restorative energy to make the song an original, while also possessing enough master of the song's intentions to not alienate faithful Tears for Fears listeners.

But a soundtrack is not a soundtrack without a few heavy hitters, and the Vampire Diaries soundtrack has quite a few. There's the slinky, serpentine "Currency of Love," from Silversun Pickups and the synth-ehnanced swerve of Smashing Pumpkins' "The Fellowship," and that's only the tip of the iceberg. Plumb's chilling and evocative "Cut," is laced with pain and vulnerability and as tender and fragile as any ballad on the disc. Britons Gorillaz make an appearance with "On Melancholy Hill (Feed Me Remix), a more buoyant and splashy take on the original that leaves asking the questions, are vampires really this happy?

Goldfrapp and Bat For Lashes chase down electro-pop with the former taking on mid-tempo meandering with "We Radiate," while the latter tackles eerie effects and club beats on "Sleep Alone (909s in Dark Times mix)." But of all the heavy hitters none are as strong as Placebo's tour-de-force cover of Kate Bush's "Running Up That Hill," a mesmerizing and transcendent execution of precision, passion and prescience. There's a reason Placebo are so widely revered across the world and "Running Up That Hill," is veritable proof of that. The disc's last two pieces are Mike Suby's "Stefan's Theme," and "1896," which are haunting, dense, creepy and tailor-made for TV. While Suby is a no-name, his contributions to this soundtrack might change that.

When it's all said and done, this easily mockable WB TV series has assembled one of the more arresting and invigorating compilations of music released this year. And while it probably won't usher in new fans to the franchise, it will at least
give listeners armfuls of new music to digest in the days after Halloween.

Track Listing 1. Stefan's Theme - Mike Suby
2. Running Up That Hill - Placebo
3. Currency of Love - Silversun Pickups
4. Hammock - Howls
5. Sleep Alone (909s in Dark Times mix) - Bat For Lashes
6. Bloodstream (Vampire Diaries remix, 2010 Digital Remaster) - Stateless
7. We Radiate -Goldfrapp
8. Obsession - Sky Ferreira
9. Head Over Heels -Digital Daggers
10. Down - Jason Walker
11. Beauty of the Dark (2012 Digital Remaster) - Mads Langer
12. Cut - Plumb
13. All You Wanted - Sounds Under Radio featuring Alison Sudol
14. The Fellowship - Smashing Pumpkins
15. On Melancholy Hill (Feed Me remix) - Gorillaz
16. 1864 - Mike Suby


Recommended If You Like Any of the 15 bands on the compilation, duh!


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Displaying posts 1 - 13 of 13
07:20 AM on 10/30/10
#2
geebee889
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I LOVE this soundtrack. It's so effing good.
07:23 AM on 10/30/10
#3
jtjt43
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Love Placebo's version of Running Up That Hill. Great review too.
08:02 AM on 10/30/10
#4
KingsCrossing
What are you waiting for?
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Good for SUR.
09:15 AM on 10/30/10
#5
fothermucker
Show's over, mother fuckers.
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Mediocre? I like this show. guess that's just me.
09:17 AM on 10/30/10
#6
HometownHero
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I LOVE this soundtrack. It's so effing good.
09:22 AM on 10/30/10
#7
geebee889
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Don't roll your eyes at me! You know how much I love this show!
10:20 AM on 10/30/10
#8
Gregory Robson
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Mediocre? I like this show. guess that's just me.
Dig the acting a little bit, don't really like the vampire idea. It's getting tired and derivative. If I want to be kind, it's slightly above average. But to each their own. We like what we like, ya know?
12:32 PM on 10/30/10
#9
fothermucker
Show's over, mother fuckers.
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Dig the acting a little bit, don't really like the vampire idea. It's getting tired and derivative. If I want to be kind, it's slightly above average. But to each their own. We like what we like, ya know?
I feel you. I just like that these vampires are actually vampires that kill people and what not. but hey like you said, to each their own.
02:17 PM on 11/01/10
movingxpictures
Is it a dream keeping you awake?
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Why was this even reviewed?
03:20 PM on 11/01/10
Gregory Robson
Under Rug Swept
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Why was this even reviewed?
I suppose I could ask the same question....why are you even here?
12:12 AM on 11/02/10
symbiote28
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i do think there's some really nice songs on the series. and also nina dobrev is too hot not to watch. :)
05:52 PM on 11/03/10
OurLadyCoolbean
False. Black bears.
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I love the Pumpkins song. It's supposed to be out for a free download sometime I would think (because it's also on Teargarden by Kaleidyscope) but I'm not sure when. I'm not going to buy this whole album just to get it though.
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