The "Where the Wild Things Are" Soundtrack song list is the answer to the question: How do you select songs for the soundtrack to a children's classic transformed into a serious and sometimes surreal and artsy film for an adult audience? A quirky musical collaboration, Karen O and the Kids (Karen O, Tristan Bechet, Tom Biller, Brian Chase, Bradford Cox, Dean Fertita, Aaron Hemphill, Greg Kurstin, Jack Lawrence, Oscar Michel, Imaad Wasif and Nick Zinner) created the music for this movie. Headed up by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs frontlady, Karen O, collaborators on the soundtrack included members of the Afternoons, Deerhunter, Queens of the Stone Age, and New Folk Implosion, as well as an untrained children's choir. All tracks except "Lost Fur" are written and performed by members of Karen O and the Kids.
Soundtrack and Songlist for "Where the Wild Things Are"
"Igloo"- This brief, melancholy, and relaxed track with vocals and guitar by Karen O and Bradford Cox on the Glokenspiel is the musical background to the opening scenes and the song itself opens with sound-bites from the movie of Jack talking to his mother.
"All is Love"- Strumming guitars by Karen O, Tom Biller, Bradford Cox, Imaad Wasif, and Nick Zinner, and a steady drumbeat by Brian Chase, as well as whistling, children singing, shouting and spelling out upbeat lyrics about how everything is love make this song an ideal contrast to the opening number.
"Capsize"- Despite child-like elements like hand-clap percussion, and spelling words out, this song has a much darker, more sinister feel created by dissonant chords, background vocals and instrumentation, due in part to Bradford Cox's efforts in vocal treatments and ambient sound.
"Worried Shoes" – Written by Daniel Johnston and sung by Karen O, this melancholy number brings to our attention to the fact that children worry too.
"Rumpus" – This is the ideal accompaniement for Jack's rumpus as the newest king of the wild-things. It's cheerful but bittersweet with vocals from Karen O, and the children's choir and Bradford Cox and Nick Sinner on the vibes (vibraphones).
"Rumpus Reprise" – This reprise to the first rumpus track is quieter and sad around the edges with low vocals by Karen O, and Dean Fertita on the marimba.
"Hideaway" – Lullaby-esque, this song lulls the listener into a melancholy life-is-passing-us-by calm with vocals by Miss O, Cox on the bells, and Fertita on the Piano.
"Cliffs" – This is a lightly pretty instrumental track with vocals by Karen O and Oscar Michel on the bowed bass but no distinguishable lyrics.
"Animal" – This track is laced with desperation, percussion unusual bird sounds and rocker-style shrill Karen O vocals as treated by Bradford Cox.
"Lost Fur" – One of the few tracks not composed by Karen O and the Kids on the soundtrack, this exquisite orchestrated piece composed and conducted by Carter Burwell needs no vocals or lyrics to communicate a sense of hopelessness and sadness.
"Heads Up" – This is another fun upbeat track by Karen O and company.
"Building All Is Love" – This is a reprise to the soundtrack's first-released single, All is love, (this time featuring Tom Biller on the banjo) so if it sounds familiar, you know why.
"Food is Still Hot" - A quietly half-sung, half-hummed, and over all very comforting track, just what Jack needs when he gets home from Where the Wild Things Are, this is a track composed and sung by Karen O with Tom Biller on the fun Machine, Bradfod Cox on the delay bells, and Imaad Wasif on the harmonica.
"Sailing Home" – Something of a reprise on the soundtrack's initial track, igloo, but faster and more upbeat with Karen O and her crew of musical miscreants: Biller on percussion and guitar, Chase on the drums, Fertita on the piano, and keyboards, Lawrence on the Bass, and Wasif , Cox and Zinner on Guitar.