Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Music: The Best of Breaking Bad

"Breaking Bad" is pretty much the only show I watch nowadays, which you can view as either an indictment of television in general or a tribute to the quality of the show in particular. I've talked about it before, and stand by everything I wrote then; showrunner Vince Gilligan has packed the series with visually striking panoramas, great performances, and hefty doses of black humor.

Another well-crafted aspect of the show is the killer soundtrack (original score provided by Dave Porter and music selected by Thomas Golubić). Here are some of the highlights from the finale of Season Four and the beginning of Season Five (spoiler-free):

"Goodbye" - Apparat

So much of "Breaking Bad" is building tension. Danger looms over the proceedings (Walter White gets a death sentence in the very first episode of the show), and it's not hard to picture some life-or-death struggle (two grizzled gunfighters in an Old West showdown, say) with music like this:


"Black" - Danger Mouse & Danielle Luppi, starring Norah Jones

The final episode of Season 4 ended with a startling revelation, and it needed to be paired with an equally revelatory piece of music. This cut, from the spaghetti Western-influenced album "Rome," became an instant classic to fans of the show last year. The lyrics are an eerily-good fit for Walter White's character.


"On a Clear Day (You Can See Forever)" - Mario Biondi

Not every "Breaking Bad" song is recent. An early Season Five episode used this cover of an American standard, covered by Mario Biondi. Again, it's a perfect fit for the scene it accompanies, both lyrically and mood-wise.

"Bonfire" - Knife Party

Okay, sometimes the music selection gets a little crazy. But then again, sometimes Walter White gets a little crazy, too. "Breaking Brostep" time, b----!

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