Wednesday, March 18, 2020

A Pandemic Playlist, Part 3: Music

If you're staying inside to stop the spread of COVID-19, you'll need entertainment, so I've put together a "pandemic playlist" of disease-related media for your consumption (of course, while this list is lighthearted, do please heed the health and safety recommendations of the WHO and CDC).  Anyway, it's time to kick up your feet and relax with some plague-related tunes...

"Down with the Sickness" by Disturbed

This track fittingly played during the end credits of Zack Snyder's "Dawn of the Dead" remake, and it's also on the playlist of my local Krav Maga gym. As I understand it, it's one of the band's signature tunes. Aside from the chorus, the lyrics honestly don't have too much to do with infection, but whatever.

"Bat & Pig" by Cliff Martinez

I'm most familiar with former Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Cliff Martinez from his moody soundtracks for Nicholas Winding Refn's films ("Drive," "The Neon Demon").  It turns out, though, that Martinez has actually worked with Steven Soderbergh more than any other director, including his throbbing synth score for "Contagion."

"The Last of Us" by Gustavo Santaolalla

Coronavirus or not, Naughty Dog devs are reportedly crunching nonstop for "The Last of Us Part II," so it's a fine time to reminisce about the first game. A big part of what made "The Last of Us" special was its music - the title track, covered above by Taylor Davis, starts out small but builds to a plaintive crescendo befitting Joel and Ellie's cross-country trek through a fungus-infested America.

"Three Little Birds" by Bob Marley and the Wailers

The best part of the film adaptation of "I Am Legend" is the first half hour or so, before CGI "Darkseekers" and Alice Braga ruin the conceit of Robert Neville being the last man on Earth. The best part of that first half hour is this quiet scene with a diegetic play of Bob Marley's classic reggae track.


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