It’s impossible to not get sucked into Big Little Lies just from the opening credits alone. There are beautiful Northern California beaches, ocean waves, the green rolling hills from a car window, Reese Witherspoon, and of course, the gentle, soulful cooing of “Cold Little Heart” by British singer Michael Kiwanuka.
While Big Little Lies is defined by its enormous houses, its impossible wealth, and the performances of its truly incredible cast, it’s the music that gives the show its real vibe, its rhythm.
Big Little Lies maintains its cool thanks to the music taste of a sassy 7-year-old who listens to Leon Bridges, Sade, and Frank Ocean. The soundtrack is a defining character of its own. And thankfully, that continues in Season Two, with a soundtrack that only rivals Season One in terms of curation and tone.
Throughout Season Two, we’ll be running down every single song played in each episode, so be to check back here to know exactly which track you’ll need to add to your next playlist.
Joan Jett — “Bad Reputation”
When it Played: Jane is helping get Ziggy ready for school. Which is fitting, considering Ziggy’s reputation at school last year.
The Spinners — “I’ll Be Around”
When it Played: The parents are returning to school after the murderous trivia night fundraiser. Lord knows, Madeline will always be around.
Jimmy Ruffin — “What Becomes of the Brokenhearted”
When it Played: Renata is listening to it in her car. Is this foreshadowing of what’s to come for Laura Dern’s character?
Diana Ross — “It’s My House”
When it Played: During Renata’s photoshoot. It sure as hell is Renata’s house.
Mystery of Love — “Sufjan Stevens”
When it Played: Jane is dancing on the beach before she meets sexy—and strange—surfer boy. If there’s any love here, it sure is a mystery for this one-fifth of the Monterey Five. The real mystery, though, is how you would dance to this song?
Portishead — “The Rip”
When it Played: Abigail is listening to this on her laptop, as is the right of passage for any angsty teen.
Cassandra Wilson — “Harvest Moon”
When it Played: This cover of Neil Young accompanies Celeste’s memories of Perry. And HBO sure does love Cassandra Wilson.
Sinead O’Connor — “All Apologies”
When it Played: Sinead’s cover of Nirvana is playing in Jane’s room right before she has an apologetic hang out with Celeste when they talk about Perry’s crimes.