Ranking All The Songs from The Labyrinth Soundtrack

The Labyrinth

Jim Henson directed this 1986 classic co-written with Dennis Lee and Terry Jones. The movie stars David Bowie, Jennifer Connelly, and Toby Froud. Before Bowie was chosen for the role in the movie, there were several other considerations for the role of the Goblin King including Sting. The movie is a fun premise; an older sister named wishes her younger stepbrother was taken by a Goblin King and he is. However, as sibling bonds go, you only realize how much you can about someone until it’s almost too late to say so. The film chronicles her adventures trying to reach him in time. According to IMDB, the owl in the opening sequence of the film is the first time a CGI animal was placed in a film. The soundtrack was an integral part of the movie. As Sarah goes explores the Labyrinth and via extension the fears and anxieties we have as children, we’re carried away even further into the story by the choices in music. This is a ranking of all the songs from the Labyrinth Soundtrack.

12. The Goblin Battle – Trevor Jones

 

The inspiration for the numbers on the Goblin knights came from Thomas the Tank Engine and friends. Of all the songs on the soundtrack, this one seems to fit the least with the rest of the film. Some music critics felt that the song was too chaotic and had little to no flow. However, as Jones progressed, so did his music; he went on to do amazing scores on other films like Merlin.

11. Home At Last – Trevor Jones

 

The movie Labyrinth brings the perils of transitioning from a child to a teenager and then an adult to life. One of the things that separated Jones’s work on this soundtrack from other work is it has a heavier focus on an electronic style of music which coalesces well with the more traditional orchestration.

10. Underground – David Bowie

 

This song is played during the final credits. One of the things that are kept people listening to this soundtrack is the cult status the film Labyrinth achieved. Each song in the film plays well into each other and it’s a great listen if you want to take a short interlude from day-to-day life or a trek down memory lane.

9. Within You – David Bowie

 

Jareth sings this to Sarah in his castle near the end of the film. During the sequence when the song plays, Sarah is standing up to the Goblin King played by Bowie. The song is rumored to be Bowie’s favorite from the Labyrinth. When looking at the scene in the movie, you’ll undoubtedly a lot of it was inspired by MC Escher’s paintings.

8. Thirteen O’Clock – Trevor Jones

 

1300 hours on the 24-hour clock is 1 am, and many people consider midnight to one am of the most likely times to encounter a demon or goblin. In the movie, Sarah makes the wish at midnight. Thirteen hours is also the amount of time she has to save her baby brother from The Goblin King.

7. Sarah – Trevor Jones

 

If you look closely at the movie you will see pictures of David Bowie next to King Jareth. Many felt that Jones’s portions of the soundtrack were discordant. Undoubtedly, this was because they were used to his work on more traditional soundtracks for movies like Last of the Mohicans. One piece of consistency you will hear is contained in this song which borrows from the Opening Credits.

6. Into The Labyrinth – Trevor Jones

 

When creating the Labyrinth Soundtrack, it was decided to go with a multi-faceted approach which was certainly the case with a pairing like Jones; a South African musician, and David Bowie a British rock idol. This movie wasn’t Jones’s first with Henson; the pair worked together on the film the dark crystal. While listening to this song you moviegoers will be witnessing the characters exploring Jareth’s maze.

5. As The World Falls Down – David Bowie

 

This is one of two official music videos directed by Steve Barron and featuring Bowie which was used to promote the film. Contained in the video is footage that isn’t in the movie. During the movie, the song plays during the masquerade ball when the Goblin King tries to draw in Sarah. The frenetic nature of the song lends itself pitch perfectly to the disturbing nature of the scene.

4. Chilly Down – David Bowie

 

According to Bowie Bible, in 1986 Bowie called the song “a little swamp-type number for the Chillies or Wild Things, strange woodland creatures who waylay Sarah on her travels. It’s the only one of his songs on the soundtrack where he doesn’t do lead vocals.

3. Opening Titles – David Bowie and Trevor Jones

 

According to Movie Music UK, Jones and Henson visited Bowie at his home in Gstaad Switzerland. The singer was already working on his contributions to the film when the pair arrived. Together, they mapped out the rest of the soundtrack including the opening sequence music. Alongside the visual effects, starting the film with this song helped set the whole tone of the movie.

2. Hallucination – Trevor Jones

 

While in the Labyrinth, Sarah bites into a poisoned peach and begins seeing things that aren’t real. This song plays as the images appear before her. The instrumentation plays into her love of classic literature.

1. Magic Dance – David Bowie

 

There was a lot of production work that went into this scene. While shooting; there were forty-eight different puppets on set. In total it took fifty-two puppeteers as well as eight people in Goblin costumes to film this scene. When listening to the song you may hear a distinct gurgling; that’s David Bowie. The piece is a fun romp since it features a Bowie dancing with his goblin minions.

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