Nicolas Winding Refn Shares the Music That Inspired 'The Neon Demon'

Nicolas Winding Refn Shares the Music That Inspired 'The Neon Demon'

Step inside the Danish auteur’s freewheeling, demented mind with these 14 songs.

Step inside the Danish auteur’s freewheeling, demented mind with these 14 songs.

Text: Thomas Freeman

Nearly a year after the release of The Neon Demon, director Nicolas Winding Refn will release a vinyl compilation, titled The Wicked Die Young, containing 14 tracks that inspired the film.

Equal parts shock-horror flick, Grimm fairy tale and soap opera, the multitudinous influences of the film were clear since its premiere at Cannes, where it polarized critics and delegates with its distinctive visual flare and unabashed, giddy blend of gore and sex (read: necrophilia). Unsurprisingly, the songs that informed Refn’s nightmarish conception of the L.A. modeling industry are similarly varied.

Side A of the record sees glam ‘70s-era disco hits, like “Follow Me” by Amanda Lear, existing alongside punk-rock gems, like “Pirate Love” by The Heartbreakers, and contemporary synthpop. The cinematic influences are more pronounced on Side B, which features the theme from Brian De Palma’s 1980 erotic thriller Dressed to Kill and a track from Cliff Martinez, Refn’s longtime collaborator who composed the techno-driven soundtrack to The Neon Demon.

Below, browse the full tracklist of The Wicked Die Young. Revisit V's cover story with the cast of The Neon Demon here.

Side A

01. Electric Youth – “Good Blood”

02. Lynsey de Paul – “Won’t Somebody Dance With Me”

03. Suicide – “Cheree (1998 Remastered Version)”

04. 999 – “Homicide”

05. Johnny Thunders & The Heartbreakers – “Pirate Love”

06. Dionne Warwick – “(Theme From) Valley of the Dolls”

07. Tommy Seebach – “Bubble Sex”

08. Amanda Lear – “Follow Me”

Side B

01. Giorgio Moroder – “Knights In White Satin”

02. Sparks – “The No. 1 Song In Heaven”

03. Cliff Martinez – “Becoming”

04. Pino Donaggio – “Dressed to Kill (Pulsion) (1980): The Shower (Theme from Dressed to Kill)”

05. Claudio Gizzi – “End Of A Myth”

06. Julian Winding – “When You Want To Hurt Someone”

The Wicked Die Young is now available for pre-order on Amazon, where it will be released on April 14.

Credits: Banner image: Elle Fanning photographed by Steven Klein for V102 in 2016.

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