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Saw II Soundtrack Review
by Dan Upton

I've heard complaints before that hard rock/metal soundtracks are one of the dumbest things to have happened to horror and thriller movies. I tend to disagree though, since I've never cared for that type of movie, but the soundtrack CDs are usually a good way to consolidate tracks from different artists, get remixes, and occasionally discover a new band. While this soundtrack has its share of flops, it has some pretty solid material too--let's take a look.

The disc opens with a remix of Manson's "Irresponsible Hate Anthem," which originally appeared on Antichrist Superstar. I'm rather hit or miss on Manson's stuff, and while I don't know anything about the original, this remix is a big miss. Some of the other disappointments on this disc are songs like The Used's "Sound Effects and Over Dramatics"--not that bad for them, I'm just not big on The Used--and "Blood (Empty Promises)" from Papa Roach, which is just a weak track for them. There's also the bizarre, like "Three Fingers" by Buckethead with Saul Williams, which is somewhat of a throwback to "Ballad of the Buckethead" with the spoken/loosely-rapped lyrics over Buckethead's guitar noodling and compositional experimentation. It's not bad, it's grown on me, but it seems...very out of place, to say the least.

On the other hand, there are some excellent songs to be found here, including Sevendust's "Pieces," one of the harder tracks from their most recent release. Mudvayne's "Forget to Remember" makes an appearance, which I'd consider a plus. The remix of QotSA's "Burn the Witch" isn't as good as the original, but it's catchy and if you liked the original version you'll still probably appreciate this one. The standout track, and probably the most appropriate for a creepy movie, is Puscifer's "Rev 22:20" featuring Maynard Keenan. Pure tension and atmosphere, with haunting vocals reminiscent of some of his stuff with A Perfect Circle. There are two songs on this disc begging to be let loose to radio, A Band Called Pain's "Holy" and Bloodsimple's "September." (As an aside, neither of these songs seem to be indicative of the band's actual style--while both songs are easily comparable to a mix of bands like Earshot, Disturbed, and Breaking Benjamin, many of A Band Called Pain's tracks are much heavier, and BloodSimple are going to be touring with Trivium and God Forbid.) Finally, the CD has several industrial tracks, including a remix of Skinny Puppy's "Rodent," and "Caliente" from the Revolting Cocks featuring, among other people, Al Jourgensen from Ministry. Sounds about right, seeing as how the first time I listened I thought I had somehow switched to Ministry's "N.W.O."

All in all, this is a pretty decent mix as long as you aren't counting on many of the tracks to recreate any sense of suspense (with the exception of the Puscifer track, The Legion of Doom's "Home Invasion Robbery," and Charlie Clouser's score). Some of the tracks might take a few listens to warm up to, but if you're in to any of the better-known bands I mentioned then you'll definitely find at least a handful of tracks on this that you like.

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Saw II Soundtrack

Label:Treadstone Records

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