Used to be in the movies that the strains of young romance meant calling in Carly Simon or Kenny Loggins for a luv theme. It's the conceit of Cameron Crowe's "Singles" film that nowadays yuppie architects as well as waitresses and musicians are more likely to be casting longing glances across smoke-filled post-punk clubs than piano lounges.
"Singles" does happen to be set where that scenario is most probable right now--Seattle, for whose music scene this soundtrack is just about all the primer a beginner needs. The movie's two key songs come from Paul Westerberg--refugee from the nation's last musical hot spot, Minneapolis--but the rest are almost all new songs from a short list of notable Northwest bands.
A few years ago, Seattle was synonymous with grunge, but this sampler makes clear that its most famous representatives of late all learned well from the blustery proficiency of Led Zeppelin. (And that's even disregarding the actual Zep tune here, "Battle of Evermore"--by the Lovemongers, a.k.a. Heart's slumming Wilson sisters, one of whom is married to Crowe.) For a tune you're going to leave the theater humming, though, it's up to eternal pop classicist Westerberg, whose irresistible "Dyslexic Heart" is an apt summary of the movie's gentle confusions ("Are you just playin', makin' passes / My heart could use some glasses").
Wait,There's More: New releases by DJ Quik, Skinny Puppy, Brian McKnight and the Mavericks. Page 58.
Albums are rated on a scale of one star (poor) to four (excellent).