Home Read Classic Album Review: Various Artists | Traffic Soundtrack

Classic Album Review: Various Artists | Traffic Soundtrack

The score for Steven Soderbergh’s drama offers a cornucopia of high-flying delights.

This album came out two decades ago. Here’s what I had to say about it back then (with some minor editing):


A movie about the drug trade deserves some suitably trippy music — and this score for Steven Soderbergh’s new drama Traffic certainly aims to please with a veritable cornucopia of high-flying delights.

First, there’s a half-hour score by former Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Cliff Martinez, who alternates hallucenogenic synthesizers with hypnotically restless percussion, producing a buzz that somehow manages to soothe your senses and heighten your paranoia at once. That’s followed by an eclectic smorg of stimulating tracks, from the snuff-worthy classical fare of Beethoven’s Piano Sonata No. 1 and the dope-haze hip-hop of Morcheeba’s On the Rhodes Again to the post-psychedelic grooves of Rockers Hifi’s Going Under Love and Insanity and the Ecstasy-drenched grooves of Fatboy Slim’s Give the Po’ Man a Break. After all that, you might need to join a 12-step program just to get the CD out of the changer.

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