Despite extreme age and genre differences, highly acclaimed performers like Paul McCartney, Carly Simon, Tina Turner, Madonna, and Alicia Keys all have one thing in common.
Sure, they’re all singers. They’ve all had a song on Billboard’s Top 100 Chart at some point in their stellar careers. But they also belong to a secret society, an underground organization that rolls 21-deep and allows access to only the most worthy of artists, an exclusive club that holds an entire cinematic empire in the palms of its hands: they are the voices behind the James Bond theme songs.
And so it was announced that a new member received her invitation to join among the ranks of the Bond titans: South London’s very own Adele. Her new single “Skyfall” became available on iTunes on October 4th and will serve as the main theme song to the newest James Bond movie, Skyfall, which is set to premiere in theaters everywhere on November 9th.
This film is the 23rd addition to the longest ongoing movie franchise in cinema history and marks the 50th anniversary of the James Bond empire. It’s no question that this soulful diva with the big voice deserves such an honor. Adele established herself as the star of the pop music industry after cleaning up at the Grammys in February with a whopping six awards including Album of the Year, Best Pop Solo Performance and Song of the Year.
So you might be thinking, how could a melancholy break-up song possibly be a good fit for a movie that includes every aspect of action cinema known to man? I mean, Daniel Craig is jumping off buildings, while shooting a gun at a moving target and avoiding a massive explosion, all while dressed to the nines in a classic black tuxedo. I’m pretty sure that “Someone Like You” isn’t exactly appropriate.
However, Adele’s classic piano lines and sultry voice slides show to be the perfect accompaniment for the upcoming film, which is rumored to be more of an emotional rollercoaster for viewers than previous Bond films. A recent synopsis depicts a test of loyalty between Bond and his employer, M, as well as a possible crumbling of the agency MI6 as a whole.
In Adele’s new single, an opening of traditional Bond-like horns leads up to a dramatic first line as Adele sings, “This is the end.” The chorus that follows serves as a foreshadowing of sinister events, as the orchestra builds in volume and Adele cries out, “Let the skyfall, let it crumble, we will stand tall, face it all together”. Perhaps a slow and more intimate score is exactly what this movie needs to pull at the heart strings of longtime Bond fans and give them something to really rave about.
Whether Bond fans are willing to put all of their faith in the hands of a 23-year-old pop star is up to them. As for me, I think that Adele’s powerful ballad lives up to the classics of “Goldfinger,” “Live and Let Die,” and “Diamonds are Forever” and her addition to the list of “Bond girls” will give the franchise a modern edge as well as shine a spotlight on its accomplishments over the past fifty years. Happy Birthday, James, and to our favorite British superstar: Adele, welcome to the club.