Sex Mob Does Bond – Sex Mob
Ropeadope Records 93054-2
There's always something that strikes me about avant-jazz musicians.
Besides talent, it helps if they have the cojones the size of watermelons
the arrogance to push their musical ambitions on to others in the same
as the pretentious film fan looks down at anyone who would spend money on
anything other than obscure independent or foreign flicks.
On this album, the five members reinterpret themes written by composer
John Barry for the James Bond series of films. Slide trumpet and mellophone
player Steven Bernstein arranges numbers from "Goldfinger", "On Her
Secret Service", "From Russia with Love", "The Spy Who Loved Me", and "You
Only Live Twice". The Mob had already recorded versions of Goldfinger
Live and Let Die on its first CD.
Unless you're a major Bond aficionado, a lot of the material will mean
nothing to you. So, the interpretations, at times, could be of anything or
more originals based on the Barry-composed soundtracks. That's just what
Bernstein does to bookend this work. He creates Dr. Yes. And, for
mattered to these ears, other than a taste of the familiar Goldfinger
theme, a hint of Bond's signature musical theme and a somewhat straight
version of Nobody Does It Better, I couldn't tell what was being
In some manner, that makes things a little too easy for the Mob. To take
numbers that aren't known basically allows them to do what they want with
'em and establish little more than their playing. Hell, I would have been
much more satisfied if Bernstein would have written additional numbers and
just dubbed this release "Based on Bond." That's how much I liked Dr.
and how little most of it means.
While there are moments when the avant-jazz tendencies get the best of
the Mob and its work, such as going for the blaring and unexpected just as
something interesting is going on, the "Sex Mob Does Bond" does prove to be
an exciting outlet for jazz enthusiasts.