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Soundtrack Review

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The Tamarind Seed
Original Motion Picture Soundtrack


Composer: John Barry
Label: Silva Screen Records
RRP: £13.99
SILCD1647 (CD), SILED1647 (download)
Release Date: 19 November 2021

Silva Screen Records release, for the first time in physical and digital formats, John Barry's soundtrack to the 1974 romantic spy thriller The Tamarind Seed. Up until 2015, only sections of the master tapes were available. More material was discovered by Tim Beddows, Director of Network Distribution, during his research to release the film in DVD and Blu-ray formats. Together with additional research and input from Jon Burlingame, Geoff Leonard and Pete Walker, The Tamarind Seed is finally released after 47 years...

Considering that by 1974 John Barry was already well known for his scores for the James Bond movies, being the composer on eight films at that point (He would go on to deliver 12 scores in total for the franchise), it's surprising to learn that a soundtrack release was never originally forthcoming for The Tamarind Seed. In style and structure it's incredibly similar to Barry's work on the Bond franchise. In fact, if I didn't know the Bond scores inside out I would have guessed that this was an early one (obviously minus Monty Norman's theme).

Though an official soundtrack album was apparently never planned, the tracks selected for this release include all the major cues used in the film, together with Wilma Reading’s commercially released single. Included are two different versions of ‘The End’, with lyrics by Don Black and as performed by Danny Street, and different versions of both main and end title themes.

The album consists of 26 tracks (56 min, 35 sec) and I don't care that the vocal songs are terribly dated and that Barry is up to his old tricks of sprinkling a handful of themes throughout the score - dressing them up differently each time they appear. To my ears this is a new Barry album and I'm in heaven.


Darren Rea

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