Let me set the scene for you. Dissertation deadlines are under two months away. Mountains of post-graduation job applications lay begging to be completed. So it only makes sense that I have spent the last week listening to every single song from the Twilight Saga soundtrack and choosing my top 5.
I must admit, when Twilight released in cinemas for the first time, 8 year old me obsessed over the love triangle while finding the soundtrack to be somewhat lacking. Although I never would have admitted it, I privately agreed with my dad when he called it ‘dreary’. I was, and continue to be, just about as far from grungy as you can get. And yet, in recent times – and feel free to chalk it up to the craziness of the past year – the soundtrack has developed a certain new allure. The Twilight Saga (and the soundtrack is an extension of this), in times of stress and confusion, has found its way to become one of my much-needed comforts: the nostalgia of fluffy socks and old picture albums for the soul.
Besides this, the resurgence of Twilight discourse on Tiktok has allowed me to indulge in the delightful cringiness of the saga (no, I have not forgiven Taylor Lautner for the line ‘Bella, where the hell have you been, loca?’).
If you happen to notice a glaring absence of songs from the New Moon soundtrack, then I would be willing to bet you are alone in this recognition. New Moon was nobody’s favourite film and this list reflects that. Now, moving on to songs that deserve acknowledgment.
5. A Thousand Years- Christina Perri
In fifth place, we have the song that is hanging on by a mere thread in this list. Perhaps this is controversial as I agree that it is indeed a classic, but I am not the same romantic that I was at 8 years old, and this song is tired. Still, it gained points for nostalgia alone, and so it sits at fifth place.
4. Turning Page- Sleeping at Last
With slow piano, building violin, and a soaring voice, this song encapsulates love and pain in one tear-jerking bundle. If you give yourself one gift this week, make it listening to this song with headphones in – it’s stunning and to place it at fourth in any list feels like a crime. Alas, we proceed.
3.Eyes on Fire, Blue Foundation
If this song fits the dreary vibe of the saga, it does so with style. The electric guitar. The daring vocals. This song is the boldest of all main character ballads. I will say no more.
2. Flightless Bird, American Mouth, Iron & Wine
I can’t help but feel as if this list is fluctuating erratically between the soothing and the spirited, but perhaps that is reflective of the film series. Anyhow, this song claims my whole heart. I could not even begin to tell you what the lyrics are going on about, and frankly I don’t care. The swinging melody appeals to my soul and Kristen Stewart’s recognition of it as ‘perfect’ only confirms its power. Props to the Twilight saga for understanding its beauty and repeating it throughout, god knows it deserves it. Hats off to Iron & Wine- you created a song that makes me feel as if I’m floating in perfectly temperate water, something I didn’t know I even needed.
1. Supermassive Black Hole, Muse
And so, for the champion of all of the Twilight series songs, we return to the spirited. I am unclear whether this song has been crowned because of its killer electric guitar or because the baseball scene is a cinematic masterpiece. Why not both? Matt Bellamy’s crooning vocals set against the slow motion running and dramatic pitching, it’s all too much. Even if I take points off for the part where Rosalie looks into the camera and calls Emmett her ‘monkey man’, this song still wins by several miles.
After all this, it feels ignorant not to give a special mention to the legend himself, composer Carter Burwell, who was throwing out classics from beginning to end. ‘Bella’s Lullaby’ cannot go unnoticed if this article is to do any justice to the soundtrack.
And so, I come to the end of my journey back through the soundtrack. I must say, it has come with surprises. Not only did I find out that Bruno Mars has a song on it (which feels off-brand all around) but I feel that this has been the final testament to my ascent into adulthood. What was once dreary is now enjoyable, and what once seemed so unironically romantic, is now cringey. At least with the enduring power of the Twilight saga soundtrack, I won’t be navigating this alone.