Various Artists; Various Artists 

15 Minutes (1500); Snatch (TVT Soundtrax)

Leave it to those crafty people who compile soundtracks to jump on a trend about three years after its position on the hot meter has begun to cool. After they spent a good portion of the '90s stuffing movie tie-ins with hip-hop and metal leftovers, it seems electronica is the new all-purpose album filler. And instead of the ubiquitous cover tune favored by their predecessors, electronic music mavens simply get a pal to remix one of their cuts, and voilà, they've got an exclusive soundtrack contribution. Moby, whose sublime Play has offered every single track to either advertisers or movie compilations, has made a new career of this fleeting infatuation with electronic music. Yet another remix of his "Porcelain" shows up on the 15 Minutes soundtrack, which is loaded with big-time electronica names such as David Holmes, Rinocerose, and Breakbeat Era.

At least 15 Minutes keeps its techno theme throughout. Snatch, the new film from Guy Ritchie (Madonna's husband), tosses a few electronic-based tracks (from Massive Attack and the Herbaliser) on its soundtrack among the smorgasbord of punk (the Stranglers), pop (10cc), R&B (Maceo & the Macks), and modern rock (Oasis). It tries to fool nondiscriminating listeners into believing that it's on the edge of electro-hipness. Carefully placed songs by Overseer, Mirwais, and Massive Attack almost disguise the fact that Snatch is more concerned with established hits by Bobby Byrd, Huey "Piano" Smith, and of course, Madonna. Cheers, then, to 15 Minutes for at least having the guts to stay in one genre for its duration. That really doesn't make the somewhat airless Prodigy and Gus Gus cuts any less moldy or the deplorable cover of David Bowie's "Fame," by annoying techno-fakes God Lives Underwater, listenable, but it does use its fame allotment more shrewdly than the stinky Snatch.

More by Michael Gallucci


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