"The Nightmare Before Christmas: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack" (Walt Disney Records; 1993/2006)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

This review isn't so much for the original Danny Elfman song score for "The Nightmare Before Christmas" (which was nothing short of absolutely brilliant) but for the recently added second disc, containing songs from the film as recorded by Marilyn Manson, Fiona Apple, Fall Out Boy, She Wants Revenge and Panic! At the Disco.

Manson's cover of the film's opening song, "This Is Halloween," opens Disc 2 and it's a perfect match. Manson gives the already eerie song a haunting atmosphere and his industrial-tinged style makes it  far more edgy than the original. Plus, it's a blast listening to Manson try to do all the voices of the film's various characters.

Fiona Apple is up next, covering "Sally's Song," a sad lament that perfectly describes the character from the film. Fiona sings the song pretty straight-forward and that's smart. Elfman wrote a great song that works as it is.

Fall Out Boy have a little more fun with "What's This," which occurs in the film as Jack Skellington discovers the world of Christmas. The band keeps the song's peppy attitude and give it a nice little pop punk edge.

Next is She Wants Revenge doing "Kidnap the Sandy Claws," and this is another band having fun with Elfman's original, giving it a nearly reggae beat with a Eurythmics atmosphere. Interesting, but a little on the dull side.

The last of the new tunes here is another cover of "This is Halloween," this time by Panic! At the Disco. Another interesting, if not particularly noteworthy, cover.

Also included are four demo versions of songs performed by Elfman. They include "Making Christmas," "Oogie Boogie's Song," "Kidnap the Sandy Claws" and yet another version of "This is Halloween." Elfman fans will be thrilled to hear these versions, although they're not that different from the ones included in the film.

Considering the macabre greatness of the original disc and the added bonus of the new "covers" and demos disc, those who love the Tim Burton / Henry Selick film will can't go wrong here.

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2006 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 04 Oct 2018 19:54:50 -0400.