- 1. Hong Kong Garden – Siouxsie and the Banshees
- 2. Aphrodisiac – Bow Wow Wow
- 3. What Ever Happened – The Strokes
- 4. Pulling Our Weight – The Radio Dept.
- 5. Ceremony – New Order
- 6. Natural’s Not in It – Gang of Four
- 7. I Want Candy (Kevin Shields Remix) – Bow Wow Wow
- 8. Kings of the Wild Frontier – Adam and the Ants
- 9. Concerto in G – Antonio Vivaldi
- 10. The Melody of a Fallen Tree – Windsor for the Derby
- 11. I Don’t Like It Like This – The Radio Dept.
- 12. Plainsong – The Cure
- 13. Intro Versailles – Brian Reitzell
- 14. Jynweythek Ylow – Aphex Twin
- 15. Opus 17 – Dustin O’Halloran
- 16. Il Secondo Giorno (Instrumental) – Air
- 17. Keen on Boys – The Radio Dept.
- 18. Opus 23 – Dustin O’Halloran
- 19. Les Barricades Mysterious – Patricia Mabee
- 20. Fools Rush In (Kevin Shields Remix) – Bow Wow Wow
- 21. Avril 14th – Aphex Twin
- 22. K. 213 – Domenico Scarlatti
- 23. Tommib Help Buss – Squarepusher
- 24. Scène III – Télaire – Jean-Philippe Rameau
- 25. Opus 36 – Dustin O’Halloran
- 26. All Cats Are Grey – The Cure
The figure of ‘Marie Antoinette’ the last queen of France before the French Revolution, has been a source of fascination for artists and musicians alike. Her life, marked by luxury, excess, and tragedy, has been the inspiration for countless works of art, literature, and music. In recent years, there has been a renewed interest in Marie Antoinette’s story, with a particular focus on her eclectic taste in music.
This interest has led to the creation of a unique soundtrack, featuring an eclectic mix of classical, baroque, and contemporary music, inspired by the queen’s own musical tastes. In this article, we will explore some of the most notable songs on this soundtrack, analyzing their significance and exploring how they reflect the complex and multifaceted personality of Marie Antoinette.
1. Hong Kong Garden – Siouxsie and the Banshees
“Hong Kong Garden” by Siouxsie and the Banshees is a post-punk classic that was released in 1978. The song features a driving rhythm section, angular guitar riffs, and Siouxsie Sioux’s distinctively edgy vocals. The lyrics are inspired by Siouxsie’s visit to a Chinese restaurant in London’s Chinatown and explore themes of cultural appropriation and exoticism. The song is notable for its use of non-traditional instruments, such as a marimba, and its incorporation of Chinese melodies and rhythms. “Hong Kong Garden” was a hit in the UK and helped establish Siouxsie and the Banshees as a pioneering force in the emerging post-punk scene. Its influence can still be heard in the music of contemporary artists today.
2. Aphrodisiac – Bow Wow Wow
“Aphrodisiac” by Bow Wow Wow is a new wave/post-punk track released in 1982. The song is characterized by its upbeat tempo, driving bassline, and tribal-influenced percussion, all of which serve to create a danceable groove. Lead singer Annabella Lwin’s vocals are sultry and seductive, adding to the track’s sensual and provocative tone. The lyrics explore themes of sexual desire and attraction, and the song’s title itself alludes to its aphrodisiac qualities. “Aphrodisiac” was a hit in the UK and helped establish Bow Wow Wow as a prominent new wave act. The track’s energetic sound and provocative lyrics have made it a fan favorite and a standout in the band’s catalog.
3. What Ever Happened – The Strokes
“What Ever Happened” by The Strokes is an indie rock track released in 2003. The song features a driving, guitar-driven melody and Julian Casablancas’ distinctively slurred vocals. The lyrics are introspective and melancholic, touching on themes of loneliness, isolation, and disillusionment. The track’s urgent pace and catchy chorus make it an energetic addition to the band’s repertoire. “What Ever Happened” was a standout track on The Strokes’ highly acclaimed album “Room on Fire” and helped cement the band’s status as one of the most important indie rock acts of the 2000s. The song’s combination of raw energy and introspective lyrics has made it a fan favorite and a staple of the band’s live shows.
4. Pulling Our Weight – The Radio Dept.
“Pulling Our Weight” by The Radio Dept. is a dreamy indie pop track released in 2003. The song features ethereal, reverb-drenched vocals and a hazy, atmospheric soundscape characterized by shimmering guitars, shimmering synths, and understated percussion. The lyrics are introspective and contemplative, touching on themes of longing and uncertainty. The track’s slow-building instrumentation and hypnotic melody create a sense of dreamlike nostalgia. “Pulling Our Weight” was a standout track on The Radio Dept.’s debut album “Lesser Matters” and helped establish the band as a prominent indie pop act. The song’s dreamy, atmospheric sound has made it a fan favorite and a staple of the band’s live shows.
5. Ceremony – New Order
“Ceremony” by New Order is a post-punk classic released in 1981. Originally written by Joy Division before the death of frontman Ian Curtis, the song was reworked by the remaining members after forming New Order. The track features a driving, propulsive beat and a soaring, melodic guitar riff. The lyrics are introspective and melancholic, touching on themes of regret and loss. The song’s mix of raw energy and emotional depth has made it a fan favorite and a landmark in post-punk music. “Ceremony” helped establish New Order as one of the most important bands of the 1980s and has remained a staple of their live shows to this day.
6. Natural’s Not in It – Gang of Four
“Natural’s Not in It” by Gang of Four is a post-punk classic released in 1979. The song features a funky, danceable bassline and jagged, angular guitar riffs that create a tension-filled soundscape. The lyrics are politically charged, criticizing consumerism and capitalist society. The track’s urgent, aggressive energy and socially conscious message have made it a staple of punk and post-punk music. “Natural’s Not in It” helped establish Gang of Four as a pioneering force in the post-punk movement and has been covered by numerous artists, including Rage Against the Machine. The song’s combination of punk rock ferocity and intellectual commentary has made it an enduring classic.
7. I Want Candy (Kevin Shields Remix) – Bow Wow Wow
“I Want Candy” is a song originally recorded by The Strangeloves in 1965, but Bow Wow Wow’s 1982 cover, with a remix by Kevin Shields, brought new life to the track. The song features a catchy, infectious chorus and a driving beat that’s impossible to resist. The Kevin Shields remix adds layers of distorted guitars, giving the track a raw, energetic sound that perfectly complements Annabella Lwin’s youthful, playful vocals. “I Want Candy (Kevin Shields Remix)” captures the carefree, rebellious spirit of the 1980s and has become a beloved classic of new wave and post-punk music.
8. Kings of the Wild Frontier – Adam and the Ants
“Kings of the Wild Frontier” by Adam and the Ants is a high-energy, tribal-infused post-punk anthem. Released in 1980, the song was a breakout hit for the band, propelling them to mainstream success. The track features a driving rhythm section, pounding drums, and the distinctive sound of Burundi drums, giving the song a unique, exotic flavor. Adam Ant’s charismatic vocals and the infectious “Oi! Oi!” chorus make “Kings of the Wild Frontier” an undeniable classic of the era. The song’s catchy hooks and infectious energy still make it a favorite of new wave and punk fans to this day.
9. Concerto in G – Antonio Vivaldi
“Concerto in G” is a classical piece composed by Antonio Vivaldi, a prominent Italian Baroque composer from the 18th century. The piece is one of Vivaldi’s most popular works, characterized by its lively and joyful tempo, intricate orchestration, and virtuosic solo violin parts. The Concerto in G is a three-movement piece that showcases Vivaldi’s signature style of weaving together multiple musical themes in a single work. The piece has been performed and recorded by countless orchestras and soloists, solidifying its place as a beloved classic of the classical music repertoire.
10. The Melody of a Fallen Tree – Windsor for the Derby
“The Melody of a Fallen Tree” is a dreamy and introspective track by American indie rock band Windsor for the Derby. The song features hazy and reverberating guitar melodies, subtle electronic textures, and mellow vocals that create a sense of introspection and nostalgia. The track’s minimalist instrumentation allows the intricate guitar patterns to take center stage, leading the listener through a journey of meditative contemplation. “The Melody of a Fallen Tree” showcases the band’s ability to blend various musical elements into a cohesive and unique sound, making it a standout track in their discography.
11. I Don’t Like It Like This – The Radio Dept.
“I Don’t Like It Like This” is a dreamy, lo-fi indie pop track by Swedish band The Radio Dept. The song features a simple yet hypnotic guitar riff that drives the track forward, accompanied by atmospheric synths and dreamy vocals. The lyrics express a sense of frustration and disillusionment with the world around us, adding a layer of emotional depth to the track. “I Don’t Like It Like This” is a perfect example of The Radio Dept.’s ability to craft poignant and introspective pop songs with a distinct DIY aesthetic, making it a beloved track among their fans.
12. Plainsong – The Cure
“Plainsong” is a hauntingly beautiful track by iconic British band The Cure. The song begins with a simple yet evocative piano melody that sets the mood for the entire track. The ethereal vocals of Robert Smith float over the sparse instrumentation, creating a sense of intimacy and introspection. The lyrics of the song are poetic and evocative, speaking to themes of loss, memory, and nostalgia. “Plainsong” is a standout track on The Cure’s classic album “Disintegration,” and is often regarded as one of the band’s most powerful and affecting songs.
13. Intro Versailles – Brian Reitzell
“Intro Versailles” by Brian Reitzell is a hauntingly beautiful instrumental track that sets the tone for the television series “Hannibal.” The piece is a mix of classical and electronic sounds, with the use of bells, strings, and synths. The track has a dreamlike quality to it, and the repetitive piano melody creates a sense of tension and unease. The overall effect is that of a mysterious and eerie atmosphere, fitting perfectly with the show’s dark and surreal visuals. Reitzell’s use of soundscapes and atmospheric textures makes “Intro Versailles” a unique and memorable piece of music.
14. Jynweythek Ylow – Aphex Twin
“Jynweythek Ylow” is a hauntingly beautiful track by the British electronic musician Aphex Twin. The title is Cornish for “Machine Music,” and the song is filled with ethereal and melancholic piano melodies, layered with electronic glitches and distortions. The track has a dream-like quality, with a sense of nostalgia and introspection. It is a departure from the intense and abrasive sound that Aphex Twin is often known for, showcasing his range as a musician. “Jynweythek Ylow” is a poignant and emotive piece of music that transports the listener to a world of introspection and reflection.
15. Opus 17 – Dustin O’Halloran
“Opus 17” by Dustin O’Halloran is a beautiful and emotional instrumental piece that uses a simple yet captivating piano melody to convey its message. The repetitive melody builds upon itself, creating a sense of tension and release as it progresses. The use of minimal instrumentation and the delicate touch of the piano gives the piece a fragile and intimate quality that draws the listener in. The overall effect is both haunting and uplifting, leaving the listener feeling a sense of awe and contemplation. The song has been used in various films and television shows, showcasing its ability to evoke powerful emotions in the audience.
16. Il Secondo Giorno (Instrumental) – Air
“Il Secondo Giorno” by Air is an instrumental piece that conveys a sense of calmness and serenity. The track begins with a gentle piano melody accompanied by subtle electronic sounds, creating a dreamy atmosphere. As the piece progresses, the piano becomes more prominent, accompanied by a delicate string section that adds a sense of warmth and depth. The track maintains its tranquil mood throughout, providing a soothing listening experience that is perfect for relaxation or introspection. Overall, “Il Secondo Giorno” is a beautiful and evocative piece of music that showcases Air’s skillful use of soundscapes and textures.
17. Keen on Boys – The Radio Dept.
“Keen on Boys” by The Radio Dept. is a dreamy indie-pop song that features soothing vocals and hypnotic beats. The song is a catchy and upbeat ode to teenage crushes and the thrill of falling in love. The dreamy melody and the nostalgic lyrics take listeners on a journey back to the carefree days of youth. The simple yet effective instrumentation creates an atmosphere of dreamy nostalgia, while the hauntingly beautiful vocals add to the song’s overall charm. “Keen on Boys” is a timeless tune that captures the essence of young love and infatuation.
18. Opus 23 – Dustin O’Halloran
“Opus 23” is a stunning piano composition by American pianist and composer Dustin O’Halloran. The song begins with a simple, repetitive melody that gradually builds in complexity and emotional intensity. O’Halloran’s delicate touch and nuanced phrasing give the piece a sense of profound introspection and melancholy, while the elegant harmonies create a feeling of space and serenity. The overall effect is both haunting and beautiful, making “Opus 23” a timeless and unforgettable piece of instrumental music that has the power to move listeners to tears with its understated yet profound beauty.
19. Les Barricades Mysterious – Patricia Mabee
“Les Barricades Mysterious” is a harpsichord piece composed by French Baroque composer François Couperin. The version performed by Patricia Mabee is a serene and elegant rendition that captures the beauty and simplicity of the original composition. The delicate and intricate notes of the harpsichord create a peaceful and calming atmosphere that transports the listener to a different time and place. This piece is a classic representation of the Baroque era and showcases the artistry and technical skill required to play the harpsichord. Mabee’s interpretation is a beautiful tribute to the enduring legacy of Couperin’s music.
20. Fools Rush In (Kevin Shields Remix) – Bow Wow Wow
“Fools Rush In (Kevin Shields Remix)” by Bow Wow Wow is a dreamy, shoegaze-infused version of the classic love song. The track opens with distorted guitars and ethereal synths, creating a hazy, otherworldly atmosphere. The vocals are soft and breathy, floating atop the instrumentation like a dreamy whisper. The rhythm is slow and deliberate, allowing the listener to fully sink into the dreamy landscape. Kevin Shields’ signature production techniques add an additional layer of sonic depth, with swirling soundscapes and subtle textures weaving in and out of the mix. Overall, the remix transforms the upbeat original into a mesmerizing, introspective journey.
21. Avril 14th – Aphex Twin
“Avril 14th” by Aphex Twin is a minimalist piano composition that evokes feelings of nostalgia, reflection, and beauty. The piece consists of a simple, repetitive melody played on a solo piano, with gentle ambient sounds in the background. The melody is delicate and introspective, with a melancholic yet hopeful tone. Despite its simplicity, the piece is emotionally powerful, creating a sense of longing and yearning. “Avril 14th” is often described as a meditation on memory and the passage of time, and its calming and meditative qualities make it a popular choice for relaxation and mindfulness exercises.
22. K. 213 – Domenico Scarlatti
K. 213 is a Baroque piece composed by Italian composer Domenico Scarlatti for harpsichord. It is a fast-paced and energetic piece that showcases Scarlatti’s virtuosity on the harpsichord. The piece is characterized by its use of rapid arpeggios and hand-crossings, creating a lively and intricate texture. Despite being written in the 18th century, the piece continues to be performed and recorded today, demonstrating Scarlatti’s enduring influence on classical music. Its technical demands make it a favorite among pianists and harpsichordists, as well as a testament to Scarlatti’s skill as a composer.
23. Tommib Help Buss – Squarepusher
“Tommib Help Buss” by Squarepusher is an experimental electronic track that blends intricate drum patterns, distorted basslines, and glitchy effects to create a chaotic yet mesmerizing soundscape. The song features jarring shifts in tempo and rhythm, often switching abruptly between serene melodic passages and frenetic, high-energy beats. Despite its complexity, the track maintains a sense of cohesion and purpose, with each element serving to build and reinforce the song’s unique sonic identity. “Tommib Help Buss” is a testament to Squarepusher’s skill and innovation as a producer and musician, and a thrilling listen for fans of avant-garde electronic music.
24. Scène III – Télaire – Jean-Philippe Rameau
“Scène III – Télaire” is a classical operatic piece composed by Jean-Philippe Rameau. It is a dramatic soprano aria that showcases the virtuosity and emotional depth of the performer. The piece is part of the opera “Les Boréades” and tells the story of Télaire’s grief over the death of her lover, Abaris. The music is characterized by intricate Baroque orchestration and rich harmonic textures, which support the expressive melody and intense emotions of the vocals. The aria is a powerful representation of the dramatic potential of opera and the timeless beauty of classical music.
25. Opus 36 – Dustin O’Halloran
“Opus 36” by Dustin O’Halloran is a poignant instrumental piece that evokes a sense of melancholy and reflection. The piano-driven melody is simple yet intricate, with delicate notes that gently build and fade. The song’s slow tempo and soft dynamics create a soothing and contemplative atmosphere, as if inviting the listener to pause and take a moment of introspection. As the piece progresses, the notes become more expressive, conveying a sense of yearning and emotion. Overall, “Opus 36” is a beautiful composition that captures the essence of O’Halloran’s minimalist style and showcases his mastery of the piano.
26. All Cats Are Grey – The Cure
“All Cats Are Grey” by The Cure is a hauntingly beautiful track from their 1981 album “Faith.” The song features a slow, ethereal melody with sparse instrumentation, highlighted by Robert Smith’s somber vocals and evocative lyrics. The use of reverb and echo creates a sense of space and depth, lending to the song’s dreamlike quality. The lyrics contemplate loneliness and isolation, with lines like “All cats are grey / In the dark,” painting a picture of a desolate, solitary world. Overall, “All Cats Are Grey” is a poignant and introspective piece of music that showcases The Cure’s emotional depth and artistic vision.