The Hunger Games is one of the biggest teen franchises of the decade, so itâ€™s only fitting that a massively successful teenager would be chosen to curate the soundtrack. Do you like Lorde? Thatâ€™s the main question you have to answer to determine whether youâ€™d like this soundtrack. The first single, â€œYellow Flicker Beat,â€ is just on the right side of sinister and intriguing, but Kanye Westâ€™s reworked â€œFlickerâ€ is much better. Having both on one album seems unnecessary, as do Lordeâ€™s appearances on the opening track and The Chemical Brothersâ€™ garish â€œThis Is Not a Game.â€
What Lorde did get right was featuring so many female voices on the soundtrack. Chvrches, Tove Lo, Tinashe, and Bat for Lashes all put in great performances that rise above the rest of the soundtrack. The real standout, however, is the magnificent Grace Jones. While most of the songs here err on the slow, dreary side of electronic, Jones is as bold as usual with almost tribal percussion and a merciful injection of electric guitar.
Ultimately, this feels more like Lorde putting together a club mix than it does a soundtrack for a film. Thatâ€™s fine if you like remixed pop music, but for me, it failed to excite.