Monday, December 03, 2007

Alternate Bond Themes: The Sublime, The Bizarre and the Say What?!?

Back when Casino Royale was released, I wrote a post where I went through all the James Bond theme songs and reviewed them. I hadn't thought about that post for quite a while, but I did get a little reminder when I was at Youtube a few days ago. You see, I ended up discovering a series of videos which feature the original opening footage from a bunch of those films, only they featured another artist who was also commissioned to write a theme song for that movie. Here are a few that really stuck out to me.

The Sublime: Blondie does For Your Eyes Only

My review of the Original: "The Bond movie this song accompanies was a more serious turn for the Moore films, and the track carries some of the same gravity, setting the proper mood for this much darker film. It is a good fit all in all but it does show its age, and again, it pales in comparison to the song it came after."
My response to the alternate opening: I think that this is much more in keeping with what a classic Bond theme should be. And I think this Blondie track aged far better than what Sheena Easton laid down.

The Bizarre: Alice Cooper's opening for The Man with the Golden Gun

My review of the original: "Responding to the rock gauntlet laid down by Wings(I never thought I would ever write a sentence like that), we were treated to this sinister sounding though kitschy rendition of a title track by Lulu. While the lyrics are a little wanting, I can't fault Lulu for that. While not a great Bond song, it is a decent intro song so you have a heads-up on the villain of this particular picture, though it is no Goldfinger."
My response to the alternate opening:: Um... I don't think Alice Cooper and James Bond should mix... so I disagree with many of the Youtube commenters on this video and I have to say that in the end, the producers went in the right direction in this case.

The Say What?!?: Thunderball by Johnny Cash

My Review of the Original: "The simplest way I can put this is it sounds like Tom Jones trying to match Shirley Bassey... and that is difficult to say the least. Not the best, not by a long shot, and it looks weak sandwiched between Goldfinger and You Only Live Twice"
My response to the alternate opening:: It was an interesting direction, I have to admit it, but somehow, it just doesn't work. I don't think twangy when I think of 007 for some reason.

I am also ready to take back my earlier comments that Saint Etienne should do a Bond Theme. I admit I may have been wrong.

To check out a few more of these alternate takes, along with some odd mashups, check out the LuiECuomo channel at Youtube.


Diesel said...

My favorite is The World is Not Enough by Garbage. I also liked the Casino Royale theme by Chris Cornell (the only decent song on that CD, btw).

Micgar said...

Yep have to agree with you on these: the Blondie song is probably the best opening song out of all of them. The Alice Cooper song is too distracting for me-and the J Cash one doesn't fit the theme of the genre very much.

MC said...

Diesel: I wasn't partial to the Chris Cornell title track. I didn't hate it, but I wasn't in love with it either.

Micgar: I wish I could have found the Tom Jones Thunderball opening... because he tries to plays it so BIG.

Semaj said...

I pretty much agree with you on the Alice Cooper one.

While Cash's song kicks ass, it doesnt fit with the JB vibe as you say.

I just hate the Casino Royale theme. It was the only thing I didnt care for in that movie

Great post, Btw