"Chicago" Soundrack Lives Up To Film

Various Artists
Chicago: Music from the Miramax Motion Picture

As the soundtrack to one of the most successful big screen musicals of all-time, "Chicago" had a lot to build on, but a lot to live up to as well. Sure, if you've seen the movie, you know the music is good, but does it work without the images?

The good news is that the Chicago soundtrack is as good as the movie in almost every way.

The best part about the soundtrack is that it doesn't try to be anything special. It simply captures the essence of the movie without trying to add any unnecessary frills. In fact, two of the tracks that are on the soundtrack, but not in the movie, are probably two of the worst tracks on the album (even though one of them was nominated for an Oscar in what probably was a sympathy bid. Non original music, which is what the songs from the film are, aren't eligible for Oscars).

To be fair, some of the tracks don't have the same jazz (no pun intended) without the stylish production of the film -- particularly "Razzle Dazzle," which seems slower without the actual razzle dazzle.

As for those extra tracks, one is worthwhile for those of us who aren't necessarily showtunes fans. The Queen Latifah/Lil' Kim remix of "Cell Block Tango" is a great rap take on the film's most exciting song, and deserves radio play, even if it comes off a showtunes soundtrack.