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Various Artists

Atlantic

Poor Angela, canceled before she ever got to sleep with Jordan Catalano. ABC obviously thought its short-lived prime-time soap was going to be big, as the existence of this soundtrack indicates, but the show’s dual focus on both teens and their parents betrayed the producers’ thirtysomething roots and doomed the show’s appeal to the younger half of its intended audience. Surprisingly, the soundtrack—while clearly contrived to appeal to teen-age girls through the presence of alternahunk Evan Dando and childlike woman singers Angie Hart of Frente! and Juliana Hatfield—is much less ersatz. The disc features neither saccharine pop ditties nor substandard castoffs. Sonic Youth’s “Genetic,” Afghan Whigs’ “Fountain and Fairfax,” and Archers of Loaf’s “South Carolina” are all respectably noisy, while the Lemonheads’ bubblegummy “Dawn Can’t Decide” and Madder Rose’s kinetic “Drop a Bomb” are stronger material than one would expect on such a compilation. On the other hand, Hatfield’s contribution, “Make It Home,” which was slickly produced for the show by W.G. Snuffy Walden (who wrote and performed the dreadful post- Mike Post series theme also contained herein), is insufferably maudlin. Perhaps fittingly so: Hatfield herself appeared on one episode of the show in a mortifyingly embarrassing turn as a folk-singing angel. There are limits to how hip prime-time TV can be.