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Taste the Happy: Varese Compiles Score Tracks from “Arrested Development”

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Arrested DevelopmentThe folks at Varese Sarabande have not made a huge mistake with one of their latest, somewhat archival soundtrack releases: a compilation of songs and score from the acclaimed television series Arrested Development.

“Now, the story of a wealthy family who lost everything, and the one son who had no choice but to keep them all together.” A catchy intro from the show’s narrator/executive producer, an uncredited Ron Howard – but for a number of semi-explainable reasons, Arrested Development failed to catch on with audiences in its three seasons on network television. Despite a killer ensemble cast (including Jason Bateman as beleaguered honest businessman Michael Bluth, Jeffrey Tambor and Jessica Walter as his scheming, lawbreaking parents; Will Arnett, Tony Hale and Portia de Rossi as his wacky siblings, David Cross as his bizarre brother-in-law and Michael Cera as his well-meaning son), the show’s mix of mockumentary vérité, rapid-fire wordplay, visual gags and humorous guest star turns only won rave reviews and six Primetime Emmys rather than ratings success for the Fox network. Of course, the Bluth family (and its creator, Mitch Hurwitz) got the last laugh this year, when the streaming service Netflix backed a fourth season of 15 episodes with the original cast intact.

As if Arrested Development didn’t have enough going for it, one of the series’ great secret weapons was its musical score. Composer David Schwartz’s twenty-second theme song, propelled by a bright ukelele riff and some whistling, was just the tip of a musical iceberg that mixed jaunty, peppy material with humorous forays into different genres and silly songs like “It Ain’t Easy Being White” (sung by Arnett as Gob Bluth, with the help of his Sesame Street-skewering African-American puppet Roosevelt Franklin), the folky “Big Yellow Joint,” the atonal rock theme song to Mock Trial with J. Reinhold (sung by famed American Idol reject William Hung) and the spy pastiche “Mr. F.”

At Long Last…Music and Songs from Arrested Development includes liner notes from Schwartz and Hurwitz, as well as tunes from all four seasons of the show, including tunes like “Fantastic 4” and “Boomerang,” sung by Schwartz’s daughter Lucy. All in all, it’s one of those really great soundtrack albums that’ll do well to put a smile on your face no matter how well you know the show: the score cues are bouncy and relaxed enough, even if you’re not driving a stair car, partying with The Hot Cops or filling a prescription for Teamocil.

The disc is in stores tomorrow; order links and the full track list are after the jump.

David Schwartz, At Long Last…Music and Songs from Arrested Development (Varese Sarabande 302 067 233 8, 2013 – original series airdates 2003-2006 and 2013)

Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.

  1. Arrested Development (Main Title)
  2. She’s Cute
  3. Getaway (Extended Version)
  4. Practice Kisses
  5. The Sound of Silence/The Cockroach (Medley)
  6. Balls in the Air (Extended Version)
  7. Face Blindness (L&M)
  8. You’ll Never Hear from Me Again
  9. As It Is Such (Medley)
  10. Tobias Eat Pray Gay (Medley)
  11. Motherboy
  12. Franklin’s Brown Sugar
  13. It Ain’t Easy Being White (Vocals: Will Arnett)
  14. Shot by Love (Extended Version)
  15. Mr. F
  16. The Yellow Boat
  17. All You Need is Smiles (Vocals: Jeffrey Tambor & David Schwartz)
  18. Big Yellow Joint
  19. Big Rock’n Yellow Joint
  20. The Cute Test
  21. Aloha Lei to You
  22. Oh Phoenix
  23. Andele
  24. Bang Bang Bang Bang (Buster Dance)
  25. I’m Blue, Man
  26. Mock Trial (Vocals: William Hung)
  27. Not Your Father, Mopy, Tiny Town (Medley)
  28. What Could Be Better
  29. She Winked
  30. Free At Last
  31. Oh My (Medley)
  32. Get Along, Little Sheep
  33. Big Ska
  34. Buster & Lucille & George & GOB
  35. Fantastic 4 (Medley)
  36. The Invisible Girl
  37. Rub It In
  38. The Chipper
  39. Teamocil (Vocals: David Cross, Portia de Rossi and Danielle Cipolla)
  40. You Here with Me
  41. Police Cruise
  42. Boomerang (Performed by Lucy Schwartz)

Written by Mike Duquette

November 18, 2013 at 13:08

Posted in News, Soundtracks

4 Responses

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  1. Jessica Walter plays Mrs. Bluth.


    November 18, 2013 at 15:05

  2. Shouldn’t track 39 say vocals by Dr. Funke’s 100% Natural Good-Time Family Band Solution? 🙂

    Been waiting for this album for years! I wish they would have included Gob’s version of “Everything I Do (I Do It For You)” since that featured prominently in one episode’s story line, but otherwise the track selection is great!

    No “Final Countdown,” but that’s not surprising.


    November 19, 2013 at 11:26

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