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An English Beauty!
Skyfall - Thomas Newman
Member Name: thedevilinme
Skyfall - Thomas Newman
Date: 08/02/13, updated on 09/02/13 (57 review reads)
Advantages: Bond is back
Disadvantages: long record
I love movie soundtracks! I had quite a few in the days of vinyl and some of the best songs are hidden on them. With Bond I did own every single one on vinyl but didn't get into CDs and so stopped around the Pierce Brosnan years. There were a lot of reasons to stop doing Bond during the Peirce Brosnan years. But when it comes to the Bond soundtrack you don't really expect anything special as it sticks fairly strictly to the Bond code and keeps it samey, as is the case with Adel's somewhat boring and droning on theme tune. If you could mix up all the previous Bond theme songs in a washing machine I reckon that song would be what came out and pegged out on the line. It's as generic as they come, all very disappointing. Adel is young talented gal and, by-the-sounds, simply penned some basic lyrics on the back of a fag packet in the pub and blew Shirley Bassey acrid smoke on it and job done. Why - o - why she didn't use her stunning voice to really belt one out here is a mystery. Shirley from the Valleys will always remain the queen of Bond for me. What an incredible sex of sexy lungs she had! Amazingly, Skyfall is odds on favorite (1/7) to win the 'Best Original Song' at this month's Oscars, the first Bond tune to be up since 'For Your Eyes Only' by 'where are they now' artist Sheena Easton. I reckon Anne Hathaway's 'Suddenly' from 'Les Mis' (4-1) could be the surprise winner there. The Skyfall CD soundtrack is an outsider at 14-1 for bests score. Adel will perform the song at the 85th Oscars to celebrate 50 years of Bond.
Skyfall is only the second Bond soundtrack not to include the theme tune on the main disc. Since Sony Records started doing the music they have milked the big song and left it off the record, Casino Royale not having the theme tune, 'You know my Name' by Aussie rockers Soundgarden, on that record. That was also the first title song since Octopussy not to use the title of the film as the title of the song. Even Adele with her fag packets couldn't write a song about Octopuses without being arrested.
With Sam Mendes directing he went with what he knows best for the music and employed a chap called Thomas Newman to put the record together, the two working on all but one of their many movies together, the underrate Away We Go missing out. David Arnold had taken over from the legendary John Barry - on his reccomendation - as the go to man for Bond in the last decade and scoring the last five, but was busy with The Olympics and so overlooked here by Sam.
It's an orchestral record so not for everyone, full of energetic strings and booming brass, but plenty of the original Monty Newman instrumental stuff we know and love resonating in the soul of the record, as you would demand and expect form the Broccoli estate. John Barry's incredibly iconic bass solo is as important as the tuxedo to make the films work and its here again. Bond still has the best opening credits ever to a movie franchise and Craig makes you feel proud to be British once again, even though the films are mostly made with American money and styles now. This record does reflect the very British feel to Skyfall in locations and texture and some are saying the best Bond movie ever, Barry Norman, no less, rubber-stamping that. But, quite rightfully, Brits go along with the hype as they are proud of being stereotyped by the dashing super agent and pack the multiplexes, the film turning out to be nowhere near as good as they hoped but good enough to know there will be more, and after the 'lesser' Bourne Legacy in their particular franchise, the two dead level again. Bond needed to be after the disaster that was Quantum of Solace.
As I say the soundtrack is instrumental and features 30 titled segments in a total running time of 80 minutes. I think because of that fact this will only appeal to hardcore fans as, like foreign subtitled movies, classical music is not for everyone, even though its makes the movies come alive. What would Star Wars by without John Williams big band sound or Rocky without Silvestri? Its good stuff though and very Bond and after you have watched a Bond film enough times you can place the song to the scene. But one viewing of Skyfall is enough for now.
As I say have most of the Bond soundtracks and this one very much like the early films in that it doesn't need other artistes on the soundtrack to be complete or to sell it. There is no standout soundtrack tune but the Bond DNA is there and so alive and well. The brash and explosive noise from Quantum Solace has been buffed back and the feel is more modern Bond, lots of percussion and guitar to go with the big orchestra. I wouldn't say it was nostalgic but it's certainly a big production of old mixed with more interesting and modern musical rhythms.
£9.99 Audio CD
£8.99 Download MP3 Album
Summary: Bond is back