Shaken and Stirred: The James Bond Project

Webomatica posts about his best and worst James Bond songs. It’s a nice list; I threw my picks into the comments, though I left out the iconic James Bond Theme. god bless John Barry for that. We disagree about Man With The Golden Gun, but to each his own.

But, really, I’d like to call some attention to another Bond-related project. Shortly before composer David Arnold took over the scoring responsibilities of the franchise, he produced a covers album featuring the famous intro songs performed by contemporary artists. In fact, this project contributed to his getting the assignment for Tomorrow Never Dies.

The disc was titled, oddly enough: Shaken and Stirred: The David Arnold James Bond Project and honestly, overall it’s not that good.

None of the performers involved (David McAlmont, Pulp, Shara Nelson, Martin Fry, others) manage to improve upon the original versions, which leads to the question, “What the heck was the point?”

Of course, there are a couple worthwhile tracks on the album. Aimee Mann does a pretty decent rendition of Carly Simon’s Nobody Does It Better and UK progressive house outfit Leftfield submits an intriguingly up-tempo remix of Barry’s Space March theme.

But the real surprise on the album comes from none other than Iggy Pop. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but his version of Louis Armstrong’s We Have All The Time In The World is sublime. Give it a listen:

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Curiously, Bjork also recorded a song for the project (Nancy Sinatra’s You Only Live Twice), but withdrew it shortly before publication. Her version is fairly faithful to the original and basically sounds, well, like Bjork singing You Only Live Twice. It surfaced on the internet a few years ago; you can listen to it below or download an mp3 here.

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10 thoughts on “Shaken and Stirred: The James Bond Project

  1. Gee, now you’ve got me hunting for the Aimee Mann cover of Nobody Does It Better. Isn’t that odd to have a tune stuck in your head that you haven’t even heard yet? I have an idea of what it might sound like… !

    Reply

  2. I tried looking for Aimee Mann’s rendition of Nobody Does It Better on the net but came up empty. If you could find, then post it, that would be wicked cool. Nice addition of Bjork’s cover, no dis on Nancy Sinatra but I actually prefer Bjork, especially those high notes.

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  3. Just wanted to say thank you for putting the Iggy Pop version Of We Have All The Time In World on your site in full.

    It is a brilliant cover & works fantastically as the end credits music The Jacket

    I have been trying to find it as I want to play it to my girlfriend, ain’t that sweet

    Thanks

    Reply

    tunequest Reply:

    Hi Duncan. Glad I could be of help to you, and honestly i think i prefer Mr. Pop’s version of Louis Armstrong’s original.

    Reply

  4. Hi Tunequest. I don’t think you should be suprised by the quality of Mr Osterberg. His output over the years has included heaps of romantic emotional ditties that show he has got quite a remarkably expressive vocal range, except usually, they suffer from universal derision because they aren’t Raw Power. The trouble is that there is only one Raw Power.
    Try Dirt, Shades or Angel, for examples. What do you think?

    Reply

    tunequest Reply:

    Greetings, S.P., I gotta be honest with you; while exploring Mr. Pop’s music has been on my to-do list for a long while, I’ve never actually gotten around to doing it. There’s actually a bunch of “classic” musicians that I’ve had bookmarked for a while that I’m just getting around to listening to. Heck, I just picked up Dark Side of the Moon last month.

    But based on what little I do know about Iggy Pop at this time, the last thing I would have expected was for him to top Louis freakin’ Armstrong. But I’ll take your suggestions as a starting point and see where it goes from there.

    Reply

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