Tuesday, 13 August 2019

EDINBURGH FRINGE REVIEW: 007 Voices of Bond at theSpace @ Symposium Hall

As the 25th Bond film is in production and hitting a variety of production headaches it was perhaps appropriate to find that at this performance of the Voices of 007 the advertised singer of Phoebe Katis had to be replaced by Hannah Richards. Fortunately she did a seamless job delivering nine classic Bond themes in the course of this 45 minute concert backed by an excellent band of four.

The format made this an easy transition as each song is introduced by a short video from the man from MI 5 giving historical details on the selected film themes, composers and singers and no chat is required from Hannah between songs. Indeed there is very little opportunity for the musicians personalities to come through at all and it is left to the music to sell the show. Only the guitarist Alex expresses himself through his grimaces and energetic playing!

However the music is what we came to hear and we get a really good sense of the range and enduring appeal of the film tunes.

First up is the wonderful Diamonds are Forever which allowed Hannah in a black cat suit to let her soaring vocals get the show off to a brilliant start. This is followed by the early Bond tune of Goldfinger in which her sexy golden voice is excellent.

The 1967 film You only live twice is third up when Nancy Sinatra sang the theme full of eastern promise with a much slower seductive tempo. This is followed by something completely different with Paul McCartney's Wing's song Live and Let Die with it magical changes of pace and style and fun guitar solos .Another change of pace gives us Marvin Hamlisch's Carly Simon song Nobody does it better with it delightful piano intro from Luke on keys. 

The sixth tune is Gladys Knight's more violent Bond theme Licence to Kill which has quiet a different feel and while it creates a powerful theme it is not the fun singalong themes that we all enjoy most. It's then to 1995 and Tina Turner's Golden Eye a more soulful tune although now accompanied with a rather irrelevant generic computer screen. My least favourite film and theme tune is Quantum Of Solace although guitarist Alex seemed to let loose with his rock jazz guitar.

We finished with the 50th anniversary film tune Skyfall which was a huge hit for Adele winning academy awards and going platinum and was one of my personal favourite Bond films. As Hannah leaves the stage after successfully delivering just her second performance the band let rip with what we have been waiting for, the Bond theme.

It was a great musical reminder of why we still love the Bond genre and can't wait for the 25th film to finally reach our screens.

Review by Nick Wayne 

Rating: ★★★

Seat: unreserved | Price of Ticket: £14
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