I was in Cambridge for a few days in 2013 and popped into a record store just to have a little look around. It was encouraging to see that they had a fair few albums available and I was flicking through a bargain box beneath the main racks, finding nothing particularly interesting, until I came to the soundtrack to the film Zidane: A 21st Century Portrait, by Mogwai. I had seen quite a lot of the film, though not sat down and watched it all of the way through, and didn’t realise that it was Mogwai who had provided the soundtrack until this moment. Naturally, I bought it.
A1 Black Spider 5:04
A2 Terrific Speech 2 4:08
A3 Wake Up And Go Berserk 4:45
B4 Terrific Speech 4:47
B5 7:25 5:13
B6 Half Time 6:49
C7 I Do Have Weapons 4:16
C8 Time And A Half 5:56
C9 It Would Have Happened Anyway 2:34
C10 Black Spider 2 4:12
I read afterwards that there were a number of long term Mogwai fans that didn’t think much of this release, but it isn’t just a normal release, it has been specifically written to accompany the film but, to my mind, this does not detract from the music, quite the opposite in fact.
The music has an eerie tranquility and, when accompanied by the visuals, does a wonderful job, although I suspect that you have to have an appreciation for football to enjoy the film, regardless of who did the music.
The film is a documentary focused on Zinedine Zidane during the Spanish Liga Real Madrid vs. Villarreal CF game on April 23, 2005 at the Santiago Bernabéu Stadium and was filmed in real time using 17 synchronized cameras. During the last minutes of the match, Zidane was sent off as a result of a brawl, well done Zidane.
Mogwai provided the soundtrack to the film, at the request of Douglas Gordon. After seeing some footage of the film with a remix of “Mogwai Fear Satan” playing in the background, they agreed to do it.
Here is a clip from the film accompanied by the Mogwai track 7:25 (I think)
Mogwai played the soundtrack live over the film at one point, as they did for ‘Atomic’, at Coventry Cathedral, which I desperately wanted to go to but I was away on that day, a major disappointment as what I was away doing was 96% less interesting than seeing Mogwai.
The opening track, ‘Black Spider’, is probably my favourite, based on the number of times I’ve played it, and it’s below if you wopuld care to have a listen. This album is probably not ideal as an ‘Introduction to Mogwai’ as it is composed for a very specific purpose, but if you like and know Mogwai already then for me it’s a must have.