David Arnold is 59 so I am listening to...

chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 1,177MI6 Agent
I understand David Arnold is 59 today.
Congrats to David.

He has a chequered reputation with many Bond fans, but I find his soundtracks far more 'James Bond' than the recent tosh we've had to put up with. I love the way he weaves the signatures we all know and love into his own themes, yet never allows them to overpower his scores. The DAD OST maybe took this too far, but that's a tribute movie in everything but name. I think he did a great piece of work on Casino Royale which wouldn't have been half as good without his prior experience. Keeping the same M, the same title designer, the same production designer, screen writers (love 'em or hate 'em) and the same composer, provided a smooth transition, with some recognisable elements thrown into a new mix.

Right now I'm listening to TOMORROW NEVER DIES which is my fav Pierce Brosnan, my fav Arnold OST and has some of my fav moments from Brosnan's era peppered throughout it. The blistering soundtrack is helping me to reconjure those memories now:
the archetypal Bondness of White Knight, the jaunty Company Car, the shimmery mystery of Hamburg Break In which morphs into the pseudo-techno drum n bass of Hamburg Break Out, Dr Kaufmann's Golden Gun inspired quietess, the pounding Back Seat Driver, the restive then surging Underwater Discovery - all augmented at the finale by Moby's stupendous James Bond Theme - which really ought to have replaced Sheryl Crow's disaster-strewn croaking warble of a tune.

Ah what a lovely hour.

Comments

  • Charmed & DangerousCharmed & Dangerous Posts: 7,161MI6 Agent
    Completely agree with you, chrisno1. I had the pleasure of meeting David Arnold, very briefly, at a movie premiere a few years back and we chatted as he signed a programme for me (I'm pretty sur he must be used to us blushing Bond fanboys by now). For me, his work on QoS - the blistering Time to Get Out and The Palio - are my favourites, but TND is a close second.

    You didn't mention Surrender, though, which is surely one of the two greatest unused pieces (the other being No Good About Goodbye) - wouldn't that have been a better finale?
    "How was your lamb?" "Skewered. One sympathises."
  • James SuzukiJames Suzuki New ZealandPosts: 2,387MI6 Agent
    Agreed! My favourite soundtrack of his is TWINE, which I sometimes feel is overlooked. His "pipeline" track and "submarine part 1" are wonderful action music, with that bond flavour so it never feels like stock action music.
    my favourite track from TND has to be "an pressing engagement" which has probably one of the best renditions of the Bond theme
    “The scent and smoke and sweat of a casino are nauseating at three in the morning. "
    -Casino Royale, Ian Fleming
  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 1,177MI6 Agent
    James, #pressing engagement, yes, that is a great rendition of the Bond Theme !

    c&d, #surrender, ah well, now, I prefer it to Sheryl Crow, but I don't like it as much as Moby.

    If Moby had been granted the title theme, I'd be quite happy to have Miss Lang over the end credits - as she is. It is noticeable that Arnold doesn't use the title track in his OST, but utilises Surrender quite a bit. Looks like Miss Crow was forced upon us all...
  • Golrush007Golrush007 South AfricaPosts: 3,028Quartermasters
    I really miss David Arnold's contributions to the series.

    As chrisno1 said in the original post, his reputation has perhaps been viewed as 'chequered' in the past, but I feel that the only reason this could be the case is that his work is inevitably judged against the work of John Barry. Compared to most, if not all, other non-Barry composers who have tackled Bond I think that Arnold's scores are superior. His general adherance to Barry's method of writing a melodically rich song and then building the rest of the score around that is one of the greatest strengths of his soundtracks, even if those songs don't end up in the actual film. His action music doesn't always stand out as much as some other composers, but I feel that his romantic music is close to the standard of Barry.

    I hope Mr Arnold had an enjoyable birthday. I always have a massively enjoyable time listening to his Bond scores.
  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,180MI6 Agent
    chrisno1 wrote:
    If Moby had been granted the title theme, I'd be quite happy to have Miss Lang over the end credits - as she is. It is noticeable that Arnold doesn't use the title track in his OST, but utilises Surrender quite a bit. Looks like Miss Crow was forced upon us all...

    Well, as 'forced' as any other Bond theme was on us, in that the people putting the film out picked her to do the song.
  • chrisno1chrisno1 LondonPosts: 1,177MI6 Agent
    emtiem wrote:
    chrisno1 wrote:
    If Moby had been granted the title theme, I'd be quite happy to have Miss Lang over the end credits - as she is. It is noticeable that Arnold doesn't use the title track in his OST, but utilises Surrender quite a bit. Looks like Miss Crow was forced upon us all...

    Well, as 'forced' as any other Bond theme was on us, in that the people putting the film out picked her to do the song.

    Which is kind if what I meant. How much input does the OST composer have? Arnold seems to have had little. I almost get the impression Crow got the gig because the producers liked "All I Wanna Do."
  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,180MI6 Agent
    Which ones haven’t been ‘forced on us’? I don’t recall agreeing to any of them! :)

    And yeah, Crow probably got the job because they liked her work and she’d had some hits: I can’t think of any Bond theme artists that’s not true of.
  • caractacus pottscaractacus potts Orbital communicator, level 10Posts: 2,350MI6 Agent
    what Barry themesongs were rejected in favour of something else?
    Mr KissKissBangBang?
    even then, Barry wrote and recorded Thunderball with Tom Jones, and integrated its themes into the score.

    were there other cases where Barry's themesong was rejected by EON and replaced by something he had no involvement in?
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 31,301Chief of Staff
  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,180MI6 Agent
    He did get A-Ha 'forced' on him though, and he was never happy about that.
  • BarbelBarbel ScotlandPosts: 31,301Chief of Staff
    Indeed he was not! :))
  • emtiememtiem SurreyPosts: 4,180MI6 Agent
    Yes he might have mentioned it just once or twice... ;)
  • caractacus pottscaractacus potts Orbital communicator, level 10Posts: 2,350MI6 Agent
    I always appreciate these near instantaneous Barbel responses!
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