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Welcome to soundtracks! Our look at the latest offerings in the soundtrack world.

he following is the official bio information provided by Universal Records and is not a review.

The Scorpion King – Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Label: Universal Records

It’s got soldiers and sorcerers. Horses charging across the desert sand.  Violent, limb-shredding swordplay. Pyrotechnics galore. The star’s name is even The Rock. So what kind of music do you put in “The Scorpion King?” Rock, of course—and make it hard, thank you very much.

“It’s an action-packed film, and I think rock music fits something exciting like that,” says Sully Erna of the Grammy-nominated Boston band Godsmack, whose “I Stand Alone”  is the lead track and first single from “Music >From and Inspired by ‘The Scorpion King,’ “ a blistering set that includes rare and previously unreleased treasures from rock giants such as Creed, System of a Down, Nickelback, Sevendust, Hoobastank and others. The 16-song album also includes contributions from P.O.D. and the ghoulish pairing of Ozzy Osbourne and Rob Zombie.

“This is the only kind of music you can have in a film like this,” Erna continues. “When the energy kicks up, I think you should have powerful music. You can’t have orchestras and violins when people are banging swords, y’know?”

“The Scorpion King,” opens in theatres nationwide on April 19, stars World Wrestling Federation superstar “The Rock” reprising the role he created in the 2001 blockbuster film “The Mummy Returns.” From the filmmakers that brought us “The Mummy,” this film is a pre-quel to The Mummy Returns in 3000 B.C., it traces the evolution of The Scorpion King from a hired assassin tracking an evil sorcerer to the leader of his society.

Republic Records President Avery Lipman says, “I remember when I met The Rock for the first time and was telling him we’ve got this great rock album, it all fell into place. He digs the Godsmack track.”

In fact, The Rock and Erna struck up a friendship while filming the video for “I Stand Alone,” in which Erna gets to morph into the Scorpion King and even perform his trademark sword move.“I got to spin it,” Erna says.  “His thing is, before he goes into battle, he gives his sword a spin and is ready to fight. So I got to do that, which was really fun since I happen to collect swords and really like them.”

Erna says Godsmack was tapped to be part of the film because “Scorpion King” director Russell is a fan of the band—and, as it turned out, Erna is similarly fond of movies of this ilk. “I Stand Alone,” an immediate hit at Modern and Active rock radio formats, was crafted from some music Erna already had, which he applied lyrics to after reading the movie script.“I tuned into the character and started to write about him, try to get into the guy’s head a little bit and that kind of thing,” Erna explains. ‘It was a good marriage.”

Erna also became an ambassador for the soundtrack, recruiting a number of the other bands including Sevendust and P.O.D., and advocating newcomers such as Mushroomhead and Flaw. He also chased after Osbourne and Zombie for a track, finally catching up to them when their Merry Mayhem tour played in Boston late last year.

“I just pulled them both aside and just told them what was going on,” Erna recalls. “I said, ‘Listen, it’s not like some bulls*** movie. It’s gonna be strong and they’re really serious about the soundtrack and it’s really smart to submit something.” His pitch worked; the duo dished up “Iron Head,” a track from Zombie’s latest album that features a guest appearance by Osbourne.

And given the amount of time the WWF and the two previous installments of “The Mummy” series tend to log on tour buses, it really didn’t take much of a sales job to lure other bands to the project.

“We said ‘Yes’ as soon as they asked us,” says Skinny of Mushroomhead, whose new album, “XX,” came out earlier this year and whose highly decorated appearance makes the Cleveland octet look like a rival army preparing to do battle with the Scorpion King and his legions. “We watched the scene with the sound down for a few days and just started writing and jamming and making up riffs. We wanted to do something that had a real feel for the action on screen rather than just ‘All right, here’s another tune.’“

Adds Lipman, “We wanted to really pack this album with as many exciting, big names as well as exciting new names and rising stars. It was important that someone could look at this album and really want it for the bands that are on it.”

But while most of “Music From and Inspired by ‘The Scorpion King’ “ definitely rattles the speakers, Republic’s Lipman is confident that there’s also a diversity that will play well with the broad audience that’s likely to turn up in the theaters.

“The Rock is pretty universal himself,” Lipman says. “This record isn’t just a headbanging record; you’ve got your Creed and your Nickelback and your Hoobastank tracks on there that soften it up and bring it towards the mainstream but still sound good with the testosterone-filled Godsmack, P.O.D. and Coal Chamber. It’s a good mix that works well with the visuals and personalities of ‘The Scorpion King.’ “


“I Stand Alone,” Godsmack—A new song composed especially for the film at the request of director Chuck Russell, a Godsmack fan. The track was constructed from a piece of music frontman Sully Erna had already composed, with lyrics drawn from film footage the band was allowed to see.

“Set It Off” (Tweaker Remix), P.O.D.—A roaring track from the Southern California rap-rock group’s platinum sophomore album, “Satellite,” remixed by nine inch nails’ Chris Vrenna under his Tweaker monkier. “We love P.O.D.  We thought they were a perfect fit for the audience who would be into the movie,” says Republic Records president Avery Lipman. “They wanted to do something a little different than just giving us an album cut, but they were on the road and didn’t have time to make a new track. So they did the next best thing.”

“Break You,” Drowning Pool—A never-released track recorded during sessions for the Dallas band’s platinum debut album, “Sinner.” The group’s hit, “Bodies,” according to Lipman, “became synonymous with wrestling fans, so Drowning Pool represents a direct link to the WFF part of the equation. This is a great song that really fits well on the record.”

“To Whom it May Concern,” Creed—Recorded during sessions for the Florida group’s 10-million selling sophomore album, “Human Clay,” this was used only as a bonus track for a European tour EP and the B-side for the international single edition of “Higher.” It’s never been released before in North America.

“Streamline,” System of a Down -- “These guys are pretty damn prolific,” Lipman notes, adding that System of a Down submitted eight songs for consideration. “Every one of them was great. The track we chose was just one of our favorites.”

“Yanking Out My Heart,” Nickelback—An unreleased track from sessions for the Canadian band’s triple platinum sophomore album “Silver Side Up.” Lipman recalls that “We first got it and listened to it, and the more we sat with it, was said ‘This is a great track.’ Then, when we saw them in the top five of the charts, it just felt like dumb luck.”

“Losing My Grip,” Hoobastank—This unreleased track was submitted prior to the release of the group’s self-titled debut album, which has gone gold made the quartet one of the hottest new rock bands of the year.

“Only the Strong,” Flaw—Lipman felt this unreleased track, recorded during sessions for the Louisville band’s debut album, “captured the spirit of the character of the movie. We couldn’t put this album out without it.”

“Iron Head,” Rob Zombie with Ozzy Osbourne—A crucial track from Zombie’s latest release, “The Sinister Urge,” “Zombie Head” is one of several Zombie soundtrack contributions, following appearances on albums accompanying “The Matrix,” “End of Days” and “Mission Impossible: 2.” Zombie also boasts a strong following amidst WWF fans, which makes the choice of this track even more appropriate for “The Scorpion King.”

“My Life,” 12 Stones—This unreleased track provides a preview for the full-length debut from this Mandeville, La., band that’s slated for May release on Wind-Up Records.

“Along the Way,” Mushroomhead—This Cleveland band has garnered attention for its menacing visual presentation—including masks, face paint and costumes—as well as for its ambitious blend of heavy musical styles. The group recorded “Along the Way” especially for “The Scorpion King,” keeping the audio track turned down in an effort to come up with music that would fit the action on the screen.

“Breathless,” Lifer—A pummeling track from this Wilkes Barre, Pa., group’s self-titled debut album.

“Corrected,” Sevendust—Recruited for the album personally by Godsmack’s Sully Erna, a frequent touring partner, Sevendust contributed this track recorded during sessions for its latest album, Animosity.

“Burn it Black,” Injected—The title track from this Atlanta quartet’s debut album in Island/Def Jam Records.

“27,” Breaking Point—This Memphis band contributed a track from its debut album, “Coming of Age,” on Wind-Up Records.

“Glow,” Coal Chamber—In the midst of recording its next album, Coal Chamber heard about “The Scorpion King” soundtrack and volunteered its services for the album. “Glow” is expected to be featured on the group’s next album, which is slated for release later this year.

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