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Music Review: Spiderman: Turn Off The Dark Original Broadway Cast Recording

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From comic book to animated TV shows, to feature films, the Spiderman franchise has been successful in almost all ways of entertainment. Now the webslinger enters new territory: Broadway. You would think it would be very difficult to bring a superhero, onto the Broadway stage and it’s interesting that in this day and age that anyone would even attempt to try it. They did, and if you can’t get to New York to see the show on Broadway, then you might want to listen to the original cast recording of Spiderman: Turn Off The Dark.

The story narrates the origin of Peter Parker and his journey in becoming Spiderman, his falling for Mary Jane Watson, and his battle with the Green Goblin. The story somewhat mirrors the first film, with the Wall Crawler heading up against the Green Goblin, but the story isn’t what I’m reviewing; it’s the music.

The music was written by U2’s own Bono and The Edge. At first people might be a little hesitant about a musical based on a comic book superhero, but they will be blown away by the soundtrack. It gives the feel of a struggling hero trying to do what’s right while still getting that classic U2 vibe throughout.

The best example of this is the song “Rise Above.” Reeve Carney gives an amazing vocal performance as the character of Peter Parker makes the choice to stand up and fight for the people of the city. Other songs on the soundtrack include “Boy Falls From the Sky”, and “I Just Can’t Walk Away.”

The duet with Carney and Jennifer Damiano in “I Just Can’t Walk Away” describes Peter Parker’s struggle with deciding whether he should continue to be a hero or walk away from his responsiblities. “I Just Can’t Walk Away” is a very strong and emotional vocal performance, and it is clearly seen why Carney was chosen for the role of Peter Parker/Spiderman.

“Boy Falls From the Sky” has the feel of old school U2. The song itself comes at the point of the show where Parker, as Spiderman, realizes that he has to be the hero that the world (and Mary Jane) needs him to be. Now the downside of this song is that the guitar riff sounds similar to the riff in the 1995 song “Hold Me, Thrill Me, Kiss me, Kill Me” off the Batman Forever Soundtrack.  They are similar, but not the same. The song just gives off a familiarity that is U2.

Turn Off The Dark is an amazing soundtrack .  Bono and the Edge took a huge chance on with this show and after a couple of rough starts, I believe that they have pulled this off, at least musically. Ihope I get the chance to watch this show live sometime soon.

For more information on the Broadway production, go to the official website.  

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About Ashley Marie Nettles