Music From and Inspired by Spider-Man (Sony)

Various Artists 

Music From and Inspired by Spider-Man (Sony)

If you're looking for a CD that could be enjoyed by your aging grandmother and your six-year-old niece, Spider-Man is just the ticket. As with the movie, the Spidey soundtrack strives to appeal to the widest possible demographic, resulting in a laughable assortment of odds, sods and nods to the latest in "hot" trends. Placing buzzworthy bands (the Strokes and the Hives -- apparently the White Stripes were unavailable) alongside Macy Gray and Danny Elfman smacks of corporate marketing and decision-making by committee. And no skyscraper-budget Hollywood soundtrack would be complete without at least one embarrassing Aerosmith track. The only thing missing is a Smash Mouth song. Instead, there's Sum 41, whose plagiarism of N.W.A.'s "Gangsta Gangsta" on "What We're All About" should prompt a grave spin or two from Eazy E. Also featured is Nickelback's Chad Kroeger, who has usurped Kip Winger as the most follicle-challenged doofus in hair metal. Kroeger might be the real Spider-Man villain. Hs crimes on the disc are truly heinous: In addition to his own nausea-inducing "Hero," Kroeger has a hand in Default's "Blind" and Theory of a Dead Man's "Invisible Man," a pair of penniless tracks that make Nickelback sound like a million bucks. If Spider-Man inspired this collection of crap, it would be one of the least moving movies in cinema history. Call the exterminator!

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