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The Punisher Soundtrack

By Ashley Ramirez, Contributor
Sunday, April 25, 2004 @ 8:51 PM


(Wind-Up)

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Have you ever bought a CD and listened to it a few times over and you still can't decide if it's great, mediocre, or just a piece of shit? That is my dilemma on this soundtrack for the upcoming movie The Punisher. I can say for a fact that all the songs on this CD is great, mediocre, or just plain shit.

Leading off strong is the return of Drowning Pool, who has recruited a new frontman in the form of former tattoo artist Jason Gong Jones. This is not the Drowning Pool you remember from three years ago -- the surviving three members of DP struck gold in discovering Jones. I will have more on Drowning Pool when I review Desensitized in a few weeks.

The next three songs, Puddle of Mudd’s "Bleed," Nickleback’s "Slow Motion" and Queens of the Stone Age’s "Never Say Never" are your typical testosterone mediocre songs. Thankfully not all the songs are testosterone driven. If you're a regular reader of The Punisher comic books then you know The Punisher, aka Frank Castle, becomes the vigilante he is after his family is killed by ruthless business man Howard Saint played to perfection by John Travolta. So with that kind of theme you need the sad or depressing songs to show the emotion.

"Broken" by Seether, featuring Amy Lee of Evanescence, provides the soundtrack’s ballad. This should've been a song for Amy to do solo with Seether lead singer Shaun Morgan providing backing vocals. His voice just doesn't do anything for the song.

Smile Empty Soul, Trapt and Chevelle contribute with "Finding Myself," "Lost in a Portrait" and "Still Running," respectively. "Finding Myself" is an acoustical number that you might hear on modern rock radio, which isn't too bad of a song. "Lost" and "Still Running" -- same can be said as well.

"Ashes to Ashes" by Damageplan with Jerry Cantrell is the best song on the soundtrack. Everything you'd expect is there. Powerful riffage by Dimebag, the double-bass drum from Vinnie, and the brilliance of Jerry Cantrell. I'm sure I'm not the only one who wonders why this was left off Damageplan’s incredible debut, New Found Power.

There are only a few other songs worth mentioning. When I saw the name Finger Eleven, I rolled my eyes. If you've heard that song that the radio plays to death, then you'll understand why. When "Slow Chemical" started playing, my first reaction was this song sounds familiar and I like it. It has kind of a gothic vibe to it, nowhere near Type O Negative, of course, but worth checking out. I played the song for some friends and they confirmed that the song is used by World Wrestling Entertainment performer Kane as his entrance theme.

Ben Moody -- in one of his many post-Evanescence projects, along with Jason Miller and Drowning Pool's Jason Gong Jones -- gives us "The End Has Come." A very dark moody *no pun intended* song of a man who loses everything and comes to the decision to take action by any means necessary. "I'll become what I despise, living someone else’s life." The origin of The Punisher.

Seether’s "Sold Me," Edgewater’s "Eyes Wired Shut," Strata’s "Piece By Piece," Seven Wiser’s "Sick," Submersed’s "Complicated," Atomship’s "Time For People," Mark Collie’s "In Time" and Hatebreed’s "Bound To Violence" rounds out the soundtrack with poor songs, with only the latter being somewhat decent.

This soundtrack isn't on par with some of the greats of the past such as Last Action Hero, Lost Highway, Underworld, and The Crow. Had Drowning Pool and Damagplan not been included, I'd be in the record store looking at it trying to decide whether to buy it or not.

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