Sorry I had to miss last week! My Internet has not been treating me well. I have a feeling it’s actually my computer. But I’m back this week! And I’m here to talk about…TV?
Yes! I am here to talk about the soundtrack to Over the Garden Wall, the 5-night animated mini-series that aired on Cartoon Network earlier this month. And yes, this IS a blog about music, but even TV shows have music! If there are pleasant (or unpleasant) sounds to be heard, I’m here to talk about them.
So anyway! A quick (spoiler-free) breakdown of the show: Over the Garden Wall is about a pair of brothers who are lost in a strange and magical woodland setting and are trying to find their way home with the help of a talking (and reluctant) bluebird. They encounter several characters along the way and try to help them so that they can get help in turn. The story is broken into 10 chapters. Think of it as a series of fairy tales strung together like a charm bracelet. It’s all very whimsical and has a sort of late 19th/early 20th century American folk tale feel to it.
On to the music! The soundtrack (most of it anyway) is available to listen to for free on Cartoon Network’s YouTube channel. No official album available for purchase yet. Which is a shame, and hopefully will be remedied soon! Go ahead and give it a listen. It’s just a little over 14 minutes and there really aren’t any spoilers that can be pulled from it. The songs here don’t play in order! (Click the letters at the top right for each following track – It should spell THE UNKNOWN.)
The music really keeps up with that whimsical theme. It’s very inspired by late 19th/early 20th century American folk music. In a making of the music featurette, Elijah Wood (who voices Wirt, one of the brothers) states “If this show were a record, it would be played on phonograph.” That’s clear to me right away. I can almost hear it with the occasional minute scratch or hiss under the music.
My favorites (and most everyone else’s, I’d wager) are “Langtree’s Lament” (gotta learn all the words – I love this one!) and “Potatoes and Molasses,” which sounds gross and yet I want to try it because of this show and song. However, I also really like “Over the Garden Wall” and “Into the Unknown” as well as “Patient is the Night” and “A Courting Song” (which makes me want to do a little jig). Well, that’s about half the soundtrack, haha.
“Like Ships” is super corny, which is great because of what happens later in the chapter featuring this song. (I won’t give it away!) “Come Wayward Souls” is super creepy – and it’s meant to be, seeing as how it’s sung by the antagonist. “Forward Oneiroi!” is tough for me to like on its own. It was very particular to a segment that happens in one of the chapters. Same goes for “The Highway Man” but that one stands stronger on its own. It’s still meant to me listened to while you watch the sequence!
I would totally buy this soundtrack if they released a digital version. Heck, I would buy it on vinyl AND get a record player just to hear it that way! That same making of the music featurette shows them creating the LPs (although I think technically it’s an EP?) but it seems they made a limited amount for release in press kits only. So unfair!
Give this soundtrack a listen now if you want – but watch the mini-series too! You can buy it on iTunes in HD for $9.99 – or SD for $6.99 – and it’s not even 2 hours long in total. Yes, I said this is a music blog, but I’m allowed to like other things, and I LOVE this show! I keep thinking about watching it again and again. In between views, I just play the soundtrack over and over again. So lovely.