Now that I've met you
Would you object to
Never seeing each other again?
These opening words of the song "Deathly" (track 4 on the album) inspired writer/director Paul Thomas Anderson to pen the multi-character drama Magnolia. It was his idea, being a fan of Aimee Mann, to adapt her music for the screen. Therefore, what better soundtrack to the film than to have nine Aimee Mann songs (with a few others)?
If most of the songs didn't overlap with others of her albums, this would just as well be a new Aimee Mann album, because it has showcased her sharp songwriting abilities to a whole new audience, resulting in an Academy Award nomination for "Save Me," written especially for the film. The CD begins--appropriately, as it plays over the opening credits--with Mann's cover of the Harry Nilsson track "One," which was previously a huge hit for Three Dog Night in the '70's, but to which Mann adds her own special pained touch.
Next is an unconventional rocker, "Momentum," but then the album slows down considerably with "Build that Wall," "Deathly," and others, before getting back into familiar territory. One of the most memorable scenes in the film is the "music video" stylings of Anderson having all his characters sing "Wise Up." Relive that moment by singing along yourself to track 8, then go right into "Save Me."
Also featured on the Magnolia soundtrack are Supertramp, who chime in with two of their big hits: "Goodbye, Stranger" and "The Logical Song" (a personal favorite) and ends with Gabrielle and Jon Brion showing their particular gifts. The album is not as cohesive as a normal studio album, or, for that matter, Anderson's soundtracks to Boogie Nights, but as a collection of songs, or an introduction to Aimee Mann, this soundtrack is hard to beat.