Juno, the controversial movie tackling teenage pregnancy, has been out for ten years now. When I first watched it, I thought the movie was great. The message is clear, and Juno is very relatable (although not literally). However, the soundtrack sticks with me most – it’s a gem for indie lovers.
From indie power names like Belle and Sebastian and Cat Power, to the less known names like Kimya Dawson, the soundtrack pulled from a wide variety of artists. Sonic Youth’s cover of “Superstar”, originally by the Carpenters, pulls from the punk scene. “Dearest” by Buddy Holly and “Well-Respected Man” by The Kinks pull from rock ‘n’ roll. The diversity of genres present strengthened the underground-indie feel of the soundtrack. Something nice about the different cultures of music present is that they all still feel connected. Yes, Buddy Holly came way before Kimya Dawson but it blended together well… almost as if “Dearest” is the grandfather of “Tire Swing”.
What ties the songs together are the colors present in the songs. They are all full of emotionally raw, honest lyrics. Guitar, usually acoustic, wails out each song. However, there is a heavy emphasis on the vocals, especially in tracks by Kimya Dawson. Most of the lyrics deal with naivety and have a sort of sarcastic, sadistic humor to them. I especially love the song “Anyone Else But You” because you can feel the youth of the singers.
The most popular song in the Juno soundtrack would be “All I Want Is You” by Barry Louis Polisar. It opens the movie, and its upbeat rhythm and chords get stuck in your head all day. Don’t let that hang you up; take a chance to really listen to the other songs throughout the movie.
The soundtrack did win the Grammy for Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media, after all. At the time I watched it, I was going through a phase where I was heavily into indie music, and this collection still takes the cake. These songs create an overall ambiance that, when played together, tell a story like an album would.
The Juno soundtrack helped me through many days. It goes well with just about every mood. I hope you can enjoy this soundtrack as much as I have. Take a peek at my “Juno Soundtrack” playlist on Spotify. It includes all the songs from the movie except “Vampire” by Antsy Pants, which is not on Spotify.