There are some things you cannot go wrong with. Like listing your favourite soundtrack of Marvel movies (MCU) in order. It was not a particularly easy task since there are 18 films that belong to the Marvel Cinematic Universe. While some were great, some, not so much. Now, there are two distinct teams that are always at the neck of each other, yes, it is of DC and Marvel that I speak of. While Marvel has consistently delivered, one cannot say the same about DC. However, it will be very hard to deny that when it comes to the world of music, DC has reigned supreme. But it looks like MCU has realised over the years that music can be an essential part of the narrative. Here are top five soundtracks from the world of MCU. And remember, a listicle like this is always subjective. Just to avoid any war that breaks out over the topic.
Guardians of the Galaxy Awesome Mix Vol. 1 and Vol. 2
A small but crucial reminder– Before Thor: Ragnarok, there was Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1. The soundtrack of the film was nostalgic, cool, and as the album says, pretty damn awesome. The movie included several hits from the 80s, as director James Gunn had earlier pointed out in an interview that he needed the old, forgotten classics of the past in the film, as Chris Pratt’s character, Peter Quill, belonged to the same era.
As fans would remember, Star-Lord carried his walkman everywhere with him in the movies. It was his Horcrux. And when your hero displays such fondness for music, it is only natural that you would want the songs and the score to be exceptional. And they were. While the original score composed for Vol 1 by Tyler Bates was pretty good and sat well with the film, it was the compiled soundtrack from the bygone era that really made the album stand out in the crowd as something fun yet unique.
Awesome Mix Vol. 2 followed in the same vein as Vol. 1. Consisting of great throwback tracks like Mr Blue Sky (Electric Light Orchestra), Fox on the Run (Sweet), The Chain (Fleetwood Mac), Hooked on a Feeling (Blue Swede), and of course, Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell’s Ain’t No Mountain High Enough. FYI: Awesome Mix Vol. 1 was one of the highest selling albums of 2014, right at the top of the Billboards chart.
While Thor Ragnarok was still heavily inspired by the music of the 80s, it cannot be denied that the film had one of the best original scores. Second only to the Guardians. In 2016, Mark Mothersbaugh was hired to write music for the superhero film. According to a report by The Hollywood Reporter, Mothersbaugh was inspired by a video essay that was critical of the music of MCU movies. The video raised questions about why the soundtrack of Marvel movies were not as memorable as that of the Bond movies. And in case you were wondering why the soundtracks of The Lego Movie and 21 Jump Street sound so great, know that Mothersbaugh was the man behind the mission.
Composer Michael Giacchino’s music for Doctor Strange is as fantastical as the film itself. Take, for instance, the track The Master of the Mystic End Credits. Ah, orchestral music! Nothing quite like it. Then there is Ancient Sorcerer’s Secret. Eerie, Ominous, but with the Harry Potteresque feel to it. However, The Hands Dealt has to be my favourite from the entire soundtrack. Pure and peaceful, thanks to the beautiful harmonisation of the piano and the violin.
The biggest success of MCU till date, Black Panther not only delivers at the story-telling level but manages to sway the audience as well with its urbane-sounding music. The curated soundtrack for the film was produced by Grammy-winning artist Kendrick Lamar. Numbers like Pray For Me, All the Stars, and I am resonate well with the youth. The original score for the film was composed by Ludwig Göransson.