Skyfall leak: Is Adele's James Bond theme song any good?

Oct 2, 2012

'A Bond song that actually stirs the heart,' says one critic, as preview of the track appears on the internet

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PART of Adele's theme song to the latest James Bond film, Skyfall, has been leaked online three days early, and fans and critics seem to be impressed.

The song was due to premiere at 00.07 on Friday morning to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the first Bond film, Dr No, but today a clip appeared on the free music streaming site, Soundcloud. It has now been taken down, but versions of the leak have also appeared on YouTube.

Shortlist magazine said the song was everything it had hoped it would be: "A gentle piano verse makes way for the sweeping strings and soaring vocals of the chorus, before kicking into the classic Bond horn motif."

The magazine ventured that it could "well be up there with the all-time classic Bond themes".

Critics have compared Adele's effort, even though only 90 seconds has appeared online, to those by Dame Shirley Bassey, who recorded famous Bond themes including Goldfinger and Diamonds Are Forever, said the BBC.

"Bond fans are in for an aural treat", said Ajay Chowdhury, from the James Bond International Fan Club. He told Press Association: "It's a beautiful ballad that promises to become a Bondian classic."

Others took to Twitter to share their thoughts on the clip. "Sounds like she's nailed it," said one tweeter, while another commented: "Love it! What a voice."

Paul Epworth, the song's composer, hints that the best is yet to come. "I hear a short excerpt of Skyfall leaked," he tweeted. "I can't wait for everyone to hear the whole thing because Adele's performance is jaw dropping."

The Daily Telegraph's Neil McCormick said it was "a far more traditional Bond theme than we have heard in recent years, a piano ballad with a dramatic chorus and those big, romantic John Barry strings pulsing beneath while ominous horns swell".

He describes it as "a Bond song that actually stirs the heart" but warns that, for all we know, the full version of the song could be "sixteen minutes of apocalyptic dubstep madness".

Either way, Adele appears to be happy with it. Speaking before the leak, she admitted she had been "a little hesitant" at first, but added: "It was also a lot of fun writing to a brief, something I've never done which made it exciting. When we recorded the strings, it was one of the proudest moments of my life.

"I'll be back combing my hair when I'm 60 telling people I was a Bond girl back in the day I'm sure."

The song, which was recorded at Abbey Road Studios in London and features a 77-piece orchestra, will still premiere in full on Adele's official site on 5 October. The 23rd Bond film, Skyfall, is due for release on 26 October in the UK.

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