The James Bond franchise is about many things.
Fine suits. Hard liquor. Fast cars. Sleek guns.
Beautiful women. Elegant toughness. Big-time action. Exotic locations.
It's also, interestingly, intricately associated with music -- the kind created and produced by the most popular kids in the school of pop music.
Some Go for Goldfinger
All Bond fans have a favourite theme song.
Some go for the big and bold "Goldfinger." Others prefer the smooth adult contemporary styling of Carly Simon’s “Nobody Does it Better”
There might even be a few people who love to dance around to Madonna’s “Die Another Day.”
I can’t propose to speak for all Bond fans' musical tastes, but there must be a few who enjoyed that horrific “dance” track.
It takes all kinds to build a multi-decade, multi-film franchise.
Bang, Bang, Bang
The upcoming Skyfall is set to throw down in movie theatres this November and the trailer is as stylish and action packed and full of big bang, bang, bang as any other Bond film.
The newer, Daniel Craig-starring Bond films have a grittier edge while still maintaining the elegance of earlier films.
This time the powerhouse musical theme matched up with Skyfall was created by the current darling of the music world, Adele.
She’s got one name, like Madonna, but none of the pretense, false attitude hidden in Botox and ab crunches.
She’s also the kind of pop star who has charm, charisma and a voice to back it up.
Moody, Brassy, Cool
The woman who made hearts bleed with her multi-award-winning songs of heartbreak was tasked to tackle all the Bond tropes in verse and music. And she seems to have succeeded.
Her theme, also titled, “Skyfall” is moody and brassy and cool.
She’s no Shirley Bassey (who is?), but the woman can wail and purr. She can hit the high and low notes and she certainly knows how to hit those emotional notes too.
Each Bond film has a theme to set the tone and if this is any indication there will be sad times and hard times and times when people band together.
And there will be danger.
Life is Hard
Adele comes across as the ideal Bond theme dame. She’s bold, with big hair and, surprisingly, an even bigger voice.
Her perfectly drawn cat-eyes and sound harken back to the 60s Bond.
There are thoughts of martinis and cigarettes. At the same tie,s there’s still a very modern flavor to Adele’s theme.
It's almost a warning to Bond -- to take care. And says that maybe she’s been there too.
Life is hard. The music is dark and broody and the lyrics reveal a danger.
The sky is falling, and this is no Chicken Little scare tactic. It’s serious.
Fighting Bad Guys Isn't So Different from Love
She also seems to suit Daniel Craig’s Bond. He’s got a heartier, more soulful flavour that past Bonds.
Adele has seen heartbreak and her music shows it. Fighting bad guys isn’t so different from the hardships of love.
Other recent Bond theme songs have taken some risks, been a little edgier.
Chris Cornell’s foray for Casino Royale was an interesting song but there was something too Pacific Northwest, Seattle, grunge-y for it to really have sticking power.
Jack White and Alycia Keys inexplicably got together to record “Another Way to Die” for the film of the same name and it was wonderful, but also strange and not so widely marketable.
The big bass notes and brass instruments screamed Bond, but again, it was a little too out of left field to get classic status.
Skyfall is Craig’s 4th Bond outing and the 23rd film in the series and it seems that Adele is finally the artist to give the latest in the classic series a classic Bond theme.
On the Upswing to Greatness
So it seems like ”Skyfall” is destined to become a classic Bond theme, or a classic song.
But will it? It’s already climbed the charts and was number one on iTunes UK, which is a sure sign that it’s on the upswing to greatness.
Apparently Craig was pushing for Adele to record the theme to Skyfall and this pleases me to no end.
Daniel Craig as an Adele fan puts an even better spin on the pairing.
Imagine the tough guy sitting at home staring at the rain spatter against the window, backed by the grey sky.
His eyes welling up with tears as he listens to “Someone Like You."
He feels the heartache and pain as he prepares to don his suit, shine up his revolver to get into character -- as James Bond.