007 Voices Of Bond

007 Voices of Bond Adelaide Fringe 2024

Adelaide Fringe. Regal Theatre. 2 Mar 2024


007 Voices of Bond is a celebration of everything musical about the James Bond movies which first exploded onto our silver screens in 1962 with Dr No. Regardless of whether you are a Bond aficionado or merely a dilettante, everyone knows and is shaken (not stirred) by the sound of the iconic main signature theme, or hearing the phrase “Bond, James Bond”, or listening to their favourite title song from whichever movie, and there have been so many.


This is exactly what to expect from 007 Voices of Bond presented by the quality UK company Night Owl Shows. On stage there are four musicians playing rhythm and bass guitars, drums, shakers, and keyboard (synthesizer / organ / piano / other sampled instruments), and two vocalists (one of whom plays the saxophone as well). Between them they produce a hugely impressive sound which is at all times musical and well mixed. Only occasionally one might question the orchestration selected on the synthesizer, but that’s being really picky! I repeat, the sound they produce is just so good, and the vocals are first rate.


Presenting a concert of famous James Bond songs is a real challenge for singers. Most films in the franchise have a theme song, and over the years they have been written by various luminary composers, including John Barry, Lionel Bart, Don Black, Paul McCartney, Carole Bayer Sager, Tim Rice, Duran Duran, Madonna, Adele, Sam Smith and Billie Eilish and the list goes on. The songs have been sung by the likes of Matt Monro, Shirley Bassey, Tom Jones, Nancy Sinatra, Louis Armstrong, Paul McCartney & Wings, Lulu, Carly Simon, Duran Duran, A-ha, Tina Turner and so it goes on. The styles of the songs and the very nature of their composition and structure makes some suited to one type of voice and not to another. So, to bundle a selection together would seem to require a battery of different singers. But, for 007 Voices of Bond Night Owl have found two singers of enormous talent that relatively easily manage the demands of diverse songs and styles.


From the serenading style of Matt Monro in From Russia with Love to the mournful tones of Billie Eilish in No Time to Die, Agent 006 (aka Angus Munro) wows the audience with his high energy, tuneful, and generously warm voice. He also knows how to turn it on for special effect, such as in Writing’s on the Wall made famous by Sam Smith and which requires a robust and sustained falsetto. Munro nailed it.


Similarly, Agent 004 (aka Ella McCready) does Shirley Bassey proud in Goldfinger and Diamonds are Forever, and shows the versatility of her voice in For Your Eyes Only (and, for this reviewer, rivals Sheena Easton’s original).


The concert is a veritable cornucopia of songs. Others included Thunderball, You Only Live Twice, A View to a Kill, The Living Daylights, and more. They are all delivered with great style, sincerity, and sustained excellence.


Songs are introduced with quips, anecdotes and comic lines about the films and the songs, but the patter doesn’t always hit its mark. But they are musicians, classy ones at that, and not stand-up comedians, and it’s the music we came for.


Of course, singers need musicians behind them, and the ensemble is excellent, with every instrument taking its share of centre stage and contributing to mostly excellent orchestrations. The musician on keys is very fine indeed. The sound engineering is well done and empathetic to the venue, and the lighting and staging is a cut above what one normally expects in the Fringe.


Night Owl have many other “show-umentary” shows in the Fringe, featuring the stories and music of some of the greatest singers and songwriters, including The Elton John Story, California Dreams – Sounds of LA 1965-75, The Music of Adele, The Fleetwood Mac Songbook, and many others. These are not merely tribute band shows, they are thoroughly enjoyable and classy musical events.


Kym Clayton


When: Closed

Where: Regal Theatre

Bookings: Closed