The Fault in Our Stars (Music from the Motion Picture) by Various Artists
It’s been an incredibly long time since I spent my money on an entire album rather than individual tracks on iTunes. It’s also been an incredibly long time since I last felt so emotionally connected to a soundtrack as I did to the music of the recently popular movie, “The Fault In Our Stars”.
Few would argue that it isn’t an absolutely perfect fit for the story – or, really the story of anyone who struggles through the ups and downs and the joys and sorrows of life.
The music of “The Fault In Our Stars” somehow manages to capture the thousands of emotions we all experience in our lifetimes, and my favourite tracks on the album will only be snapshots of how unique this soundtrack is.
The lead single of the album is Charli XCX’s “Boom Clap”. It’s a feel-good, bass heavy earworm of a falling-in-love song that’ll make you want to march through the streets, swinging your arms without caring about the possibility that you look like a complete idiot. It’ll make you feel invincible and happy to be alive at the same time. Similarly, Grouplove’s “Let Me In” is the kind of song I’ll never get sick of blasting in my car.
The innocence and genuineness of first love is highlighted in Birdy’s “Tee Shirt”, featuring simple acoustic accompaniment and gentle harmonies. Anyone who’s ever ended up smiling for hours at their phone or computer screen can identify with it.
Tom Odell’s “Long Way Down”, M83’s “Wait”, and Birdy’s “Not About Angels” are a trio of tearjerkers that will move the manliest of men and will rend your heartstrings if the movie itself hasn’t yet already. Odell’s raw emotion, the bleakness of M83’s lyrics, and Birdy’s shivering falsetto are honest, organic, and explore the vulnerability and desperation that loss brings.
Closing the movie is Ed Sheeran’s “All Of The Stars”. A bittersweet, hopeful ending to Hazel and Gus’ story, it’s well-written and showcases Sheeran’s talent for rhetoric and storytelling. The lines, “And I know these scars will bleed / But both of our hearts believe / All of these stars will guide us home,” cleanly summarize the message of the movie and the words, “I can see the stars from America,” draw the story to a satisfying close.
There isn’t a single song in the album that’s out of place. The music of “The Fault In Our Stars” is fun, tragic, and reassuring at the same time while still maintaining a groundedness and an accessibility that makes it one of my favourite collections of music of all time. It’s the perfect soundtrack for life.