Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Various Artists, John Barry|
The Man With the Golden Gun
Genres: Pop, Soundtracks
ONE OF JOHN BARRYs MOST OVERLOOKED 007 SCORES
gobirds2 | New England | 01/24/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Back in 1974 many fans wanted John Barry back after his one film hiatus from the Bond series. Barry returned with a score to THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN, Roger Moore's second outing as 007. Track-1: "Main Title: The Man With the Golden Gun" is very good. Lulu has an incredibly strong voice and the song has a certain rock element that was in contradiction to Binder's titles, yet it is very upbeat and sets the tone of the entire film. On this CD it sounds great and has improved with time. A beautiful girl on an isolated beach towels down Scaramanga as he emerges from the water in a surrealistically exotic locale. This sets up Track-2: "Scaramanga's Fun House" where Scaramanga lures gangster Rodney Hood into the funhouse in a duel to the death. This is a great track brimming with Barry's unique sound where the music first reflects the opulence of Scaramanga's domicile and then as they enter the fun house Barry creates a spiraling `stalking theme' mixed with source music from a Western saloon and Chicago Roaring 20s era gangland back alley. This `stalking theme' is central to the Scaramanga character and his deadly profession as the listener immediately associates the music with the character. Track-8: "Hip's Trip" is an excellent example where Barry is able to write suspense music using a repeating dynamic melody that builds in intensity. This is a technique he developed and has mastered ever since the safe-cracking scene in ON HER MAJESTY'S SECRET SERVICE. This technique is probably the most identifiable stylistic trademark in John Barry's music. Track-3: "Chew Me in Grisly Land" is rich in oriental flavor and includes an effective slow paced rendition of "The James Bond Theme." John Barry does here for Roger Moore what he did for Sean Connery and George Lazenby giving them each their own unique musical rendition of "The James Bond Theme." Track-9: "Kung Fu Fight" features a good oriental motif and ends with a very catchy instrumental version of "The Man with the Golden Gun." One of the best cuts on the CD is Track-6: "Goodnight Goodnight" which is a very slow and haunting nocturnal version of "The Man with the Golden Gun." Track-7: "Let's Go Get `Em" is a tour de force of John Barry's new orchestration of "The James Bond Theme" identifiable with his Roger Moore scores. This track has a lot of punch behind it as it melds the very catchy instrumental version of "The Man with the Golden Gun" with a rousing rendition of "The James Bond Theme." Track-10: "In Search of Scaramanga's Island" is a great background composition to Bond's impressive solo flight through the uprooted rock formations near Phuket, Thailand to Scaramanga's island. Track-11: "Return to Scaramanga's Fun House" mixes Nick Nack's theme, the `stalking theme' and elements of "The James Bond Theme" as Bond is now lured into Scaramanga's game of death. This is an excellent climatic piece of scoring. Track-12: "End Title: The Man With the Golden Gun - Reprise" is in the tradition of the YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE album. The last track begins with a beautifully orchestrated version of the main title, which leads into Lulu's strong vocal rendition. I like this CD. It contained quite a bit of music from the film for once, running close to 45 minutes. When EMI reissued THUNDERBALL, YOU ONLY LIVE TWICE, ON HER MAJESTY'S SECRET SERVICE, DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER and LIVE AND LET DIE with extra tracks it was rumored that they had also uncovered the original THE MAN WITH THE GOLDEN GUN score as well. Unfortunately, EMI was over their budget for this project and those extra tracks never made it onto the reissue of this soundtrack. Perhaps the length of music already on the album influenced this decision. Of coarse this is just speculation. On the positive side this soundtrack did not spare in its use of "The James Bond Theme" which most fans can't get enough of. My favorite cuts are Track-6: "Goodnight Goodnight" and Track-8: "Hip's Trip." "Goodnight Goodnight" stands its ground alongside Barry's best Bond compositions. "Hip's Trip" even though lightly orchestrated as already mentioned represented a new technique of repeating a dynamic melody that builds in intensity. This is a very interesting and satisfying James Bond album.