This music has been close to me for a long time and a couple of emotional breakdowns. I should probably state I didn’t really like the film, yet the music is a totally different story. Cause in fact, this album tells a story – of a simple, though theoretically complicated relationship.
The soundtrack consisting of 13 songs (15 in Collector’s Edition) was composed by Glen Hansard of Irish The Frames and Czech singer&pianist Markéta Irglová (they also played main characters in the film). The two later on became a couple and keep releasing new albums as The Swell Season.
Musically Once is very simple – generally it’s either just piano (like in Markéta’s The Hill), guitar or acoustic/folk band. But the purpose of this album is not to astonish you with incredible music skills, 10-minutes solos and opera voices. Don’t even try it if you’re looking for them.
Once can make you fall in love with its emotions (emo-bands can go cut themselves for years, but they’ll never reach it) and sincerity. Glen and Markéta are just honest in their songs and we can feel it. I’m also enchanted by their lyrics – also very simple, but catching what’s in your head when it seems so messy you just want to turn it off.
All songs are very good (well, maybe Broken Hearted Hoover Sucker Guy is more of a joke than a song) but the best are absolutely Falling Slowly (it even won Oscar, wow!) , If You Want Me – with amazing Markéta and lyrics with which probably every (broken-hearted) girl could identify. Also Lies and The Hill gain a lot of love. My personal favourite –after all that time – still stays When Your Mind’s Made Up.
As I said, this is not virtuoso music. What’s its purpose then? Once is a bandage on an aching heart, it makes you think you’re not lonely in your suffering and... there is actually hope for you, cause you can win with every failure. Ok, maybe I’m getting a bit far from music and that becoms a weird review=) But...
Recommended to everybody enjoying simple but true music and/or needing some mental support!