When Natural Born Killers hit theatres, it came with a windstorm of controversy. Oliver Stone directed it, and David Veloz wrote the script heavily pulled from one that Quentin Tarantino initially wrote. Throughout the movie, the media turns two serial killers into folk heroes. Perhaps the film would have been more difficult to watch if it hadn’t been for the soundtrack. There were quite a few that didn’t make it on the album, but they did cross genres and decades. This is a ranking of the songs on the Natural Born Killers Soundtrack.
26. Drums A Go-Go – Hollywood Persuaders
This song was written by Paul Butt, a sound engineer and pioneer in independent record production. It hit the charts in 1965.
25. Hungry Ants – Barry Adamson
Adamson spent two decades in the music industry before contributing this song to the soundtrack. On it, you can hear a sample from the movie.
24. The Day The Niggaz Took Over – Dr. Dre
In 1992 there were riots in Los Angeles. Throughout the song, listeners can hear audio from the riots.
23. Forkboy – Lard
In 1990 the group released their freshman album, The Last Temptation of Reid in 1990. Since the release and feature on the soundtrack, it’s been covered by groups such as Flotsam and Jetsam.
22. History (Repeats Itself) – A.O.S.
After the gas station murders, Jack Scagnetti investigates the crime scene and says, “Mallory Knox, meet Jack Scagnetti.”
21. What Would You Do? – Dog Pound
Natural Born Killers wasn’t the first time this song was in a movie. It was first in Murder Was The Case alongside other Death Row Records artists, including co-founder Dr. Dre.
20. Born Bad – Juliette Lewis
Juliette Lewis plays the character of Mallory Knox. She was one of many actresses auditioning for the role. According to EW, the actress threatened to kill him at her audition. The risky move paid off, and she got the part allowing her to show a side of women most never get to see in a film.
19. Shitlist – L7
This song was featured in several dark movies; first, Pet Cemetery 2, when zombies killed bunnies, and then Natural Born Killers, the Oliver Stone Masterpiece.
18. Moon Over Green County – Dan Zanes
One of the couple’s killing spree victims is Mabel. This song plays during the part of the movie when Mickey shoots her through a tea kettle.
17. Taboo – Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan Tatein & Peter Gabriel
During one scene, Mallory is driving a car through the city. The lyrics speak to who she is as a person. Especially the one “all I got is permanent scars and tattoos,” most of which are emotional.
16. Totally Hot – Remmy
This song is part of a scene that features a slew of newspaper publications about Mickey and Mallory. Some headlines include Why Does America Love A Killer in Time Magazine and Sex On The Run: America’s Naughtiest Couple on People.
15. Allah.Mohamad, Char, Yaar – Diamanda Galas
This song is playing during the prison riot scene. Scagnetti dies as McClusky is watching the security cameras.
14. A Warm Place – Nine Inch Nails
This is one of three songs on the soundtrack from the group, most likely because lead singer Trent Reznor produced the album. When asked about this song, he said he probably pulled too much from David Bowie since he listened a lot while recording the music.
13. Batanga in Botongaville – Budapest Phiharmonic & Janos Sandar
This song ties into an earlier one on this list. Like Hungry Ants, it’s featured during the prison riot scene.
12. Sex is Violent – Jane’s Addiction & Diamanda Galas
It was initially released on the 1988 album Nothing Shocking. Trent Reznor remixed the song with I Put A Spell On You for the Natural Born Killers Soundtrack.
11. Fall of The Rebel Angel – Sergio Cervetti
As Scagnetti and McClusky are coming to get Mallory, Mickey is being interviewed by Wayne. The title alone makes the song a great addition to the scene, but the lyrics round it out.
10. The Trembler – Duane Eddy
Eddy teamed up with George Harrison’s mentor, Ravi Shankar, to write this song. Harrison started humming the melody, and Eddy and Shankar brought it together.
9. Burn – Nine Inch Nails
The was song was initially written for the movie then released as a promotional single. When the 10th-anniversary edition of the album The Downward Spiral dropped, it was added.
8. I Will Take You Home – Russell Means
One of the main reasons Mickey and Mallory are on the killing spree across the country is that they have gone through a lot of childhood trauma. This song plays during a scene that sheds light on Mickey during a nightmare.
7. Back in Baby’s Arms – Patsy Cline
Throughout the movie, there are several scenes where we see Mallory’s insecurities. This is one where she asks Mickey if he thinks she’s pretty.
6. Route 666 – Robert Downey Jr. and Brian Berdan
This song is inspired by a quote in the movie, “I’m standing here on highway 666 running through towns, shiprock, springs and ending in Gallop New Mexico.”
4. You Belong to Me – Bob Dylan
In The movie, Mallory visits Mickey while he’s in prison. It’s interesting to see something of a touching scene despite the pair’s severe psychosis.
3. Waiting For A Miracle – Leonard Cohen
Rebecca DeMornay was the woman who Cohen is singing about in this song. Its lyrics reflect our need to always look for something better only to realize it’s right in front of us.
2. Something I Can Never Have – Nine Inch Nails
This song first appeared on the group’s freshman album. After Mickey and Mallory kill another person, the pair run out of gas. As they fight, you can hear this song.
1. Cowboy Junkies – Sweet Jane
This song was written by Lou Reed and first recorded by Velvet Underground. As Mickey writes a letter to Mallory, the haunting bars of this song weaver through his cell.