25 November 2010

Think About Death and Get Sad and Stuff

(Scott Pilgrim is an unemployed 20-something who plays bass for the band Sex Bob-Omb. Its members, his friends, are also 20-somethings in dead-end jobs and with varying degrees of maturity. Scott himself thinks dating a high schooler will distract him from the baggage of his last breakup. He then finds his dream girl in Ramona but soon trips over her own baggage; he must duel to the death with her seven evil exes for their budding romance to survive.)

You don't have to be a fan of the original comics to enjoy "Scott Pilgrim vs. The World." And I've discovered today that you don't have to know anything about indie music to enjoy the soundtrack.

That sounds kind of stupid and maybe even pretentious, but when it comes to music, I live under a rock. I don't watch TV or listen to the radio; if I do, it's usually whatever station the jeepney driver prefers (kailangan pa bang i-memorize iyan?). My boyfriend is more up-to-date, but he prefers hip-hop to the guitar-y, synth-y, whingy stuff on this record.

However,the currency of the Scott Pilgrim OST, its age-appropriateness in more ways than one, is precisely why I like it. Sure, I know that this hot indie stuff is what my peers are listening to, more or less, but that's only part of it. At the same time, the whole record is nostalgic. Some of the tracks--particularly both songs by Crash and the Boys--sound like something I would've enjoyed in high school. Some of them sound like they were written in any of the previous five or six decades. (In the case of "Under My Thumb" by the Rolling Stones and "Teenage Dream" by T. Rex, some of them were.) Then there's that 8-bit bonus track that definitely brings back memories of the classic Nintendo (or in my case, Family Computer Game) of my childhood.

Other things I can hear in there: it thinks it's mature but is really just smug, it's really frantic and in a hurry, it still clings to unrealistic ideals for relationships, and overall, it drags its feet about coming to terms with reality.

Maybe I'm reading too much into the soundtrack, especially considering that I steeped in the comics for months before the movie came out. But all in all, the whole Scott Pilgrim experience--comic, movie, and soundtrack--has been about being fully aware of how old/young I am while wishing for another time: my years of teenage ignorance, some defining previous decade I hadn't been born into, or the mellow, "real" adulthood that is to come but can't simply be skipped to. And while I don't know music, I do know that many of my friends out there feel the same way about their lives. The critics were on to something when they said that "Scott Pilgrim" was the story of a generation.

You guys. We are Sex Bob-Omb.

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