The Top 20 Soundtracks of 2016

Posted by Amoebite, December 29, 2016 04:51pm | Post a Comment

Top 20 soundtracks of 2016

There were lots of soundtrack releases to choose from this year, with many limited edition color vinyl versions creating excitement and selling out fast. Soundtracks play an incredibly important role in films by directors Quentin Tarantino, David Lynch, and Nicolas Winding Refn, so it's no surprise that they each had two soundtracks appear on this list. Music from Star Wars films, new and old, made it on this list as well. Read on to see what made each soundtrack release so special.

Suicide Squad the Album

20. Various Artists - Suicide Squad: The Album

Although the movie was not incredibly well-received by critics, the soundtrack - which features Skrillex, Twenty One Pilots, G-Eazy, Panic! at the Disco, Eminem & more - landed it into our top sellers of the year.

Released on CD and LP.

Lost Highway Soundtrack

19. Various Artists - Lost Highway

The Lost Highway soundtrack, which was produced by Trent Reznor and David Lynch, was reissued on double 180-gram vinyl this year. Features music by David Bowie, Nine Inch Nails, Lou Reed, composer Angelo Badalamenti, and more.

Released on LP.

The Witch vinyl soundtrack

18. Mark Korven - The Witch [Silver Starburst Vinyl]

The soundtrack to Robert Eggers' acclaimed horror film The Witch features original music by Canadian composer Mark Korven. People were especially excited about the limited edition silver starburst color vinyl version with original artwork designed by Midnight Marauder.

Released on CD, LP, and color LP.

the Terminator soundtrack vinyl

17. Brad Fiedel - The Terminator [Red/Blue Vinyl]

Brad Fiedel's original score to The Terminator was reissued on 180-gram red and blue splatter color vinyl. Fiedel himself supervised and mixed the remastering for this release. This was part of the "Nicolas Winding Refn Presents" series, which also includes Robocop, It Follows, and Oldboy.

Released on CD and LP.

Star Wars Soundtrack gold vinyl

16. John Williams - Star Wars [Gold Vinyl]

The first Star Wars soundtrack to make our best sellers list was John Williams' iconic score to Star Wars: Episode IV - A New Hope. It was released on limited edition double 180-gram gold color vinyl.

Released on LP.

Guardians of the Galaxy vinyl soundtrack

15. Various Artists - Guardians of the Galaxy

The deluxe vinyl edition the Guardians of the Galaxy soundtrack was released in 2014, but it remained one of our top sellers this year. It contains one disc with the soundtrack featuring David Bowie, The Jackson 5, Blue Swede and more, and a second disc of the original score by Tyler Bates.

Released on CD, deluxe edition 2-CD, and deluxe edition 2-LP.

Requiem for a dream

14. Clint Mansell featuring Kronos Quartet - Requiem For a Dream [Record Store Day]

Clint Mansell's haunting score to Darren Aronofsky's film Requiem for a Dream was remastered on 180-gram vinyl as a limited edition Record Store Day release in 2016. It includes two previously unreleased bonus tracks and the breakout "Lux Aeterna," performed by Kronos Quartet.

Released on LP.

Stranger Things, vol 2 soundtrack

13. Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein - Stranger Things, Vol 2

The soundtrack to this summer’s throwback horror series got just as much buzz as the show itself, and with good reason. This is the second volume of the soundtrack, which was released in several limited color vinyl variants.

Released on CD, LP, clear + black LP, and yellow LP.

It Follows soundtrack

12. Disasterpeace - It Follows

Although this soundtrack was released in 2015, it kept selling this year, as fans discovered the retro electro score by composer Disasterpeace. This LP was also picked up by Silversun Pickups and Modern Baseball in two of our favorite What's In My Bag? episodes of 2016.

Released on CD and LP.

Jackie Brown Soundtrack

11. Various Artists - Jackie Brown [Yellow Vinyl]

The soundtrack to Quentin Tarantino's 1997 film Jackie Brown was reissued in January on limited edition 180-gram yellow vinyl, followed in August by a standard black version on 180-gram vinyl. Features music by Bill Withers, Johnny Cash, Minnie Riperton, and more, mixed in with dialogue from the film.

Released on LP and color LP.

Trainspotting Soundtrack

10. Various Artists - Trainspotting [20th Anniversary Orange Vinyl]

Trainspotting turned 20 this year and its excellent soundtrack, which includes music by Underworld, Iggy Pop, Lou Reed, Blur, and more, was reissued on CD and 180-gram orange color vinyl. The reissue also comes ahead of the release of its sequel, T2: Trainspotting, which arrives in theaters in early 2017.

Released on CD and color LP.

Straight Outta Compton

9. Various Artists - Straight Outta Compton

The film Straight Outta Compton told the story of gangsta rap legends N.W.A., their rise to fame, and inner turmoil in one of the best music pics of recent memory. Accordingly, the film’s soundtrack acted as a crash course on N.W.A., its individual members, and the music that inspired their revolutionary G-funk sound. It incorporated N.W.A.’s early, upbeat late-’80s jams, early Eazy-E singles, two Ice Cube songs, Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg’s immortal “Nuthin’ but a ‘G’ Thang,” tracks that influenced the G-funk sound, and later songs that showed the development of the gangsta rap sound.

Released on CD and LP.

the Revenant soundtrack

8. Ryuichi Sakamoto, Alva Noto & Bryce Dessner - The Revenant

Ryuichi Sakamoto and Alva Noto matched Alejandro González Iñárritu’s harrowing film with an appropriately spare and dramatic score. The National’s Bryce Dessner contributed the intense track "Imagining Buffalo" as performed by Berlin’s s t a r g a z e and André de Ridder. It’s a haunting score that, like the film, made few concessions toward comfort.

Released on CD and LP.

Lost Themes II soundtrack

7. John Carpenter - Lost Themes II

Lost Themes II continued to bring the famed horror and thriller film director and composer out of retirement and back into the limelight. Even if Carpenter never returns to making the kind of classics films he made and scored in the ’70s and ’80s, the new music brought back fond memories of those films and reminded us that Carpenter should go down in history not only as a master filmmaker, but as a greatly influential musician as well.

Released on CD, LP, and color LP.

Star Wars The Force Awakens soundtrack

6. John Williams - Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Building off the musical universe John Williams has been building with Lucas since 1977, the composer introduced five new themes to the canon, including very memorable leitmotifs for newbie characters Rey and Kilo Ren. Of particular excitement, was a special holographic double LP on 180-gram vinyl. Hand etched by Tristan Duke of Infinity Light Science (the same guy who did Jack White’s Lazaretto), this version offered a 3D hologram experience with the Millennium Falcon on Disc 1/Side B and a TIE Fighter on Disc 2/Side B.

Released on CD, 2-LP picture disc, and holographic LP.

Drive Soundtrack 5th Anniversary LP

5. Cliff Martinez - Drive [5th Anniversary Pink Vinyl]

Director Nicolas Winding Refn and composer Cliff Martinez appear on our list with back to back best-selling soundtracks. First up is the 5th anniversary edition of Drive which was reissued in September on neon pink color vinyl.

Released on color LP.

The Neon Demon soundtrack

4. Cliff Martinez - The Neon Demon

For the soundtrack to L.A. fashion thriller, Nicolas Winding Refn once again teamed up with Cliff Martinez. A master of tension-filled minimal electro, Martinez provided track after track filled with cool, slick dread for The Neon Demon, simultaneously channelling both the magnetic siren-song glamour and the neon-tinged seamy underbelly of Los Angeles.

Released on CD and color LP.

Twin Peaks soundtrack

3. Angelo Badalamenti - Twin Peaks [Damn Fine Coffee Color Vinyl]

Back on vinyl for the first time in 25 years, Angelo Badalamenti's original score for Twin Peaks was remastered and reissued on 180-gram damn fine coffee color vinyl. David Lynch approved the new cover artwork by Sam Smith and the gatefold sleeve features lyrics and liner notes by the composer.

Released on color LP.

The Hateful Eight

2. Ennio Morricone - The Hateful Eight

No movie buff would want to miss the meeting of two minds who have created some of the most memorable film moments of all time. Ennio Morricone’s prowess with soundtracking the Western is unmatched, and his score for Tarantino’s latest is no exception. As always, Tarantino handpicked perfect accompanying songs, like The White Stripes’ saloon jangling “Apple Blossom” and Roy Orbison’s velvety march “There Won’t Be Many Coming Home,” originally from a cult ’60s Western that starred Orbison. Together with clips of Tarantino’s inimitable dialogue from the film, it’s the perfect soundtrack to this bloody epic.

Released on CD, LP, and deluxe edition 2-LP.

Stranger Things Vol 1 Soundtrack

1. Kyle Dixon & Michael Stein - Stranger Things, Vol 1

Our number one best-selling soundtrack of 2016 belongs to the first volume of the Stranger Things soundtrack. Scored by Kyle Dixon and Michael Stein, members of the Austin, TX synthwave group S U R V I V E, this LP hits all the right notes for fans of John Carpenter (both the movies and the music) and classic ‘80s horror. You don’t even need to have seen the show to dig these retro synth tunes! Volume 1 was also released in several limited color vinyl variants.

Released on CD, LP, and indie exclusive color LP.


Relevant Tags

Best Of 2016 (18), Soundtrack (16), Soundtracks (39), Suicide Squad (1), Lost Highway (3), David Lynch (29), The Witch (3), The Terminator (1), Mark Korven (1), Brad Fiedel (1), John Williams (7), Guardians Of The Galaxy (8), Star Wars (23), Clint Mansell (5), Requiem For A Dream (3), Kronos Quartet (7), Stranger Things (8), It Follows (2), Disasterpeace (1), Quentin Tarantino (17), Jackie Brown (4), Trainspotting (3), Straight Outta Compton (3), The Revenant (4), Ryuichi Sakamoto (3), Alva Noto (1), Bryce Dessner (2), John Carpenter (19), Cliff Martinez (5), Drive (15), Nicolas Winding Refn (4), The Neon Demon (3), Angelo Badalamenti (9), Twin Peaks (30), Ennio Morricone (18), The Hateful Eight (0)