ATO Records is proud to announce that the soundtrack to the subversively comedic film “Choke,” will be released on September 23, 2008. The album, a digital-only release, will have the seven songs from the film and eight others that are significant to actor, director and screen writer Clark Gregg’s vision while he was making it. Highlights include previously recorded songs by the likes of Radiohead, Death Cab For Cutie, My Morning Jacket, Clap Your Hands Say Yeah, The Fiery Furnaces, The Twilights Singers and Ben Kweller. Most notable additions are the previously unreleased or rare tracks that appear on the record, among them “Orgasm Addict” by The Buzzcocks as sung by the band’s original singer Howard Devoto, a great version of The Doors’ “Crystal Ship” by the incomparable Nicole Atkins and The Sea, and the original version by The Natural History of Spoon’s current hit single, “Don’t You Ever.” The full tracklisting and comments on each song by Gregg are below.
Fox Searchlight Pictures and ATO Pictures present “Choke,” a Contrafilm/ATO Pictures Production, based on the novel by maverick author Chuck Palahniuk (“Fight Club”). Actor-turned-director Gregg shows he is as adept behind the camera as he is in front of it with this wickedly comedic tale of Victor Mancini, con artist, sex addict, Colonial village re-enactor, angst-filled son, serial restaurant choke — and unsuspecting romantic antihero for our unsettling times.
“Choke,” which ran away with the Special Jury Prize for Best Work by an Ensemble Cast at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, is not only a cathartic and romantic satire about uncontrolled lust, lost faith, childhood trauma, mad addictions, bizarre fantasies and blockages both emotionally and literally, but also about second chances, redemptive moments and true love – that is, it’s about modern life.
The film will be in theatres on September 26 and features an ensemble cast including Sam Rockwell, Anjelica Huston, Kelly Macdonald, Brad William Henke and Jonah Bobo. Nathan Larson composed the score.
The tracklisting and comments by Gregg follow:
Ben Kweller – “The Rules”
Ben Kweller kicks ass. These lyrics feel like Victor Mancini’s rowdy, pissed-off subtext. I love that it starts off the soundtrack with some slamming indie rock and that it comes in during the colonial village while we’re looking at all the puffy shirts and bonnets.
The Natural History – “Don’t You Ever” (rare)
I only found this band recently, but I listened to them all through post. Max Tepper’s vocals are superb. I actually prefer this version to the one by Spoon and I’m a huge Spoon fan. The band broke up a few years ago. I’m going to picket their houses until they get back together.
Fiery Furnaces – “Navy Nurse”
This groove just takes your breath away.
Radiohead – “Reckoner”
Like most people, I am a huge Radiohead fan. The adaptation took me years to write so I wrote it first to Kid A, then Amnesiac and then Hail to the Thief. Later, I learned from Chuck Palahniuk that he had written the novel while listening to their song, “Creep.” In Rainbows came out while we were editing and I used almost every track in my early temp cuts of the movie. They all fit really well, but I particularly loved “Reckoner.” The tension between Thom Yorke’s keening vocals and Phil Selway’s brilliant, driving drum track fit so perfectly that it worked almost like score. I was truly dreading the day when we’d have to take it out. Somehow ATO Pictures producer, Johnathan Dorfman persuaded their manager to show the band some footage and to our shock they were generous enough to let us use the song. It’s a monumental addition to the movie.
Alap Momin – “Sin Terror”
I love this jam. We needed music for the strip-club scenes and music supervisors Lyle Hysen and Ken Weinstein knew Alap Momin from the band Dälek and he was kind enough to cook this up just for the movie. He even tailored the tracks to the scenes. The driving discordant build they layered into this piece feels like it’s feeding the tension between Denny and Victor.
Clap Your Hands Say Yeah – “Satan Said Dance”
I loved their first album and we needed something dark but not too heavy for Victor’s sudden rollercoaster ride back to the dark side. Hysen and Weinstein pitched this song and when we saw it over the scene it was just right.
Buzzcocks – “Orgasm Addict” (rare)
This is the anthem. I sort of grew up loving The Buzzcocks, moshing my way through their songs in the East Village. I must have played it every day I was writing “Choke.” I always thought we’d open the movie with it, but it didn’t work out. In any case here is a cool alternate version with a more deadpan feel and at least it made it on to our soundtrack.
Death Cab For Cutie – “No Sunlight”
What can you say, they’re just really, really good.
Blitzen Trapper – “Wicked” (unreleased)
We listened to a lot of Blitzen Trapper during the crazed five-week summer shoot. It just seemed to fit with spending your 18-hour days in a sweltering mental hospital. They’ve got some excellent chaos going on.
Ms. Tyree Sugar Jones – “If You Feel It”
This plays in another tricky scene where everything we tried felt wrong. And then I got turned on to the soulful sexy stylings of Ms. Tyree “Sugar” Jones. You put this on and you know some clothes are coming off.
My Morning Jacket – “Touch Me I’m Going To Scream Pt 1”
We’re all big Jacket fans. Listened to them constantly during the shoot. Very proud to have them on here.
Shout Out Louds – “Bicycle” (rare)
Nothing like a little kick ass Swedish indie rock. They’re like The Shins’ attitudinal Scandinavian cousins.
Twilight Singers – “There’s Been An Accident”
One of the producers, Contrafilm’s Beau Flynn, and I have been Greg Dulli fans for years. I listened to The Twilight Singers a lot when I was writing the script. The song is really moving in a haunting, portentous way that really works for the movie.
Nicole Atkins – “Crystal Ship” (unreleased)
Brilliant. She’s got a great torchy, Peggy Lee sound with just enough tongue in cheek to feel like a perfect citizen of the Palahniuk world.