Soundtrack Review: Skyfall

Skyfall
(Original Motion Picture Soundtrack)
Composer: Thomas Newman
Running Time: 77 min.
Released: 2012

 

 

 

Thomas Newman and James Bond… seem like an odd pairing to anybody else? It did to me. Action thrillers don’t hold a prominent place in Newman’s filmography, so when I heard he was onboard for Skyfall, I was amused. Surely Newman – a guy best known for his work on films like Finding Nemo and The Shawshank Redemption – would be completely out of his element here. Right? Not by a long shot. Skyfall is a feast for the ears, a Bond score with a modern edge and plenty of class. I guess passing judgment beforehand wasn’t such a good idea. I guess Mr. Newman and 007 really do go together after all.

The most remarkable thing about this score is that it never outstays its welcome, even with a running time of well over an hour. Grand Bizarre, Istanbul accompanies the movie’s opening sequence. It’s exotic and it’s exciting, and best of all, it’s thoroughly Bondian – any doubts I had about Newman’s action credentials vanished the minute I heard it Tracks like The Bloody ShotWelcome to Scotland, and She’s Mine feature some of the most rousing action music I’ve heard all year. Quartermaster and New Digs go for a subtler approach but with equally thrilling results. Tennyson has a grand and deeply heroic sound to it, and is (for my money) the most moving piece of the entire score. Those looking for a full presentation of the legendary Bond theme will find it in Breadcrumbs. The main titles song by Adele is, unfortunately, not included on the album, so I recommend you buy it separately. It’s the only thing missing from an otherwise perfect soundtrack.

Buy the MP3 album on iTunes or Amazon.com.

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