Context. Sometimes a very important thing in this game we call moo-zic, especially when someone rounds up a posse of perceived cool (and Emeli Sande) as gluttonous dressing to a magnum opus.
The Great Gashby Gatsby – as curated by Messrs Luhrmann and Carter – seems to have people swooning and sighing over ballads from the likes of Lana Del Rey, Florence + the Machine, and Sia. As songs they plod, wearing; granted they’re not supposed to be chart-friendly, but Luhrmann has them churning out what people expect to be a Lana/Florence/Sia song. Even the normally reliable xx seem to be rigor mortis.
Of course, the level of audacity here is most apparent when someone as hallowed as Beyoncé (let’s ignore Andre 3000 for now) decides to tackle Amy Winehouse’s finest moment. While we’re no worshippers at the Church of Wino and instead tend to genuflect at Halo, we have to admit: this is not good.
But as we said before, context is an important thing. We’re hoping that, when juxtaposed ‘twixt Leonardo’s quivering jowel and Carey Mulligan’s prolonged sighs, the songs gain some sort of gravitas – indeed, the soundtrack should never take away from the visual. Until then they seem to highlight everything we feared about Gatsby: you might have a stellar line-up, Baz Luhrmann, but it’s akin to handing a vibrant colour palette to a blind man. Just listen to Emeli Sande’s cover of Crazy in Love to see what we mean.