9 Best Songs From ‘Westworld’s First 3 Seasons (So Far) (VIDEO)
Declaring that “Ramin Djawadi is a genius” isn’t an unpopular opinion — not even close. Fans of Game of Thrones declared as much when many reached the consensus that the song “The Night King” was better than the entire battle of Winterfell, and many believed the song “Stay a Thousand Years” did more justice by Dany than the finale did.
But Djawadi’s work hasn’t just redeemed seasons of shows some fans felt were subpar; it’s made incredibly written seasons even better. Such is the case with Westworld, where the composer has written orchestral versions of pop songs as well as original pieces to help in the construction of a world both beautiful and broken. Multiple worlds, in fact — and the humans and hosts populating them.
Here are our picks for the best songs from Westworld’s first two seasons, and what’s aired of the third.
The Main Theme
Because of course. Ominous, western-sounding and atmospheric, the theme brilliantly set the tone for what Westworld would be about; and although the background images change every season, its brilliance remains.
Many fans miss Robert Ford (Anthony Hopkins), and whether or not we ever see him return in host form, thankfully, we’ll always have this beautiful entry to remember him by. The slower, string and piano-driven track is contemplative and almost ethereal. Ford didn’t really die. As the man himself once said, he just became music.
Akechata’s solo outing in Season 2 was beautiful from beginning to end, but no moment is as haunting as the one when he escapes the park to look for the love of his life — and he finds her in cold storage. Throughout his excursion, Djawadi’s version of Nirvana’s “Heart-Shaped Box” plays, starting off quiet and growing louder as the host makes his way toward that heartbreaking discovery. It’s beautiful, tragic and unforgettable.
If we’re discussing iconic pieces from Westworld, we’d be remiss to exclude “Sweetwater.” The upbeat, adventurous track includes what sounds like the chugging of a train in the background, referencing that all-too-familiar locomotive that ferried visitors from the mainland to the park.
If “Sweetwater” means to highlight Westworld’s lighthearted side (if such a thing exists), “MIB” perfectly embodies its darkness — and the darkness inside the man for whom the track is named. Is any theme more recognizable than the stringed bass in the track’s introductory notes that loudly declare William has arrived? We don’t think so.
Bicameral Mind, Season 3 Remix
This hasn’t been released yet, so “Bicameral Mind” isn’t an official title (it is, however, the title of the epic Djawadi composition it references from Season 1). But regardless of what it ends up being called, it’s brilliant in the way it echoes the theme to fit Caleb (Aaron Paul) and Dolores’ (Evan Rachel Wood) first meeting outside the park. The ominous background notes seem to imply all might not end well for them — or at least, there’s plenty more to this story.
Paint It, Black
Yet another rearrangement of a classic tune, “Paint It, Black” first played when Hector (Rodrigo Santoro) and his merry band of miscreants arrived to steal the safe from the Mariposa. Equally awesome? The similarly remixed version of “Seven Nation Army” that plays when Maeve and company arrive in Shogunworld to find their mirror-selves.
“If you want something done right, you have to do it yourself.” And thus, the identity of the pearls were revealed: and it was Doloreses all the way down. This eerie tune was the perfect accompaniment for that stunning reveal.
Yes, the entire episode. If there was ever a single episode of this show built to highlight Djawadi’s talents, this trippy installment was it. The way the score shifts as Caleb undergoes a mental journey from noir thriller to romance to action-adventure is jaw-dropping, and the music still manages to echo the main theme to tie everything together. Also in the episode: the brilliant Djawadi translation of David Bowie’s “Space Oddity.”
Westworld, Sundays, 9/8c, HBO