Boom Boom and Boum!

Posted on January 8, 2013


What about the music taste of James Bond “Skyfall” antagonist Raoul Silva (or Thiago Rodriguez if you like) ?
Well I’ll tell you.

The AnimalsThe Apocalyptic tune of Silva’s arrival to Skyfall is the Blues epic ”Boom Boom” written and made famous by John Lee Hooker. (Like Tammy Wynette’s ”Stand by your man” features both in GoldenEye and The Blues Brothers, so is ”Boom Boom” performed by John Lee Hooker in a smaller musical segment of ”The Blues Brothers”). Silva’s choice of artist is not Lee Hooker though but rather the British group The Animals. Their cover on ”Boom Boom” was included on their début blues-oriented album, released in October 1964 simply named ”The Animals”.

”If a song about shooting a woman, bringing her home, and stuffing and mounting her on the wall can be considered cute, well, that’s what this is. Hey, it’s all metaphorical, like when one says to a baby, “You’re so adorable, I could eat you up!” Surely this does not mean the person is a baby-eater: “Boom boom boom boom/I’m gonna shoot you right down/Right offa your feet/Take you home with me/Put you in my house/Boom boom boom boom.” Like the would-be infant-eater, Hooker is at a similar struggle to express the depths of his desire, reverting to guttural grunts and laughs (picked up later by ZZ Top): “A-haw haw haw haw/Hmmm hmmm hmmm hmmm.” But it takes little time for Hooker to enunciate specifically what he loves, ebulliently declaring, “I love to see you strut/When you talking to me/That baby talk/I like it like that/Whoa, yeah!/Talk that talk/Walk that walk.”
(from the review, written by Bill Janovitz)

Boum!!Sliva’s other favourite song, this one played on his Island is the Charles Trenet hit of 1939 ”Boum!”. (There seems to be a pattern in song titles for Mr Silva). The tune adds a certain bizarre sense of unpleasant absurdity. Shooting a prime whisky off poor Severine’s head with ancient pistols. Classy, but frightfully absurd.

Charles Trenet (1913-2001) was one of France’s great entertainers holding a career for over seven decades. Trenet was famous for his songs of the 1930’s, 40’s and 50’s but continued to peform until the 1990’s. He was also known for only singing and recording his own songs and his production was impressive. It is estimated that he wrote and published about 850 songs. Boum!” is one of his most popular tunes but his most famous song is ”La Mer” that has been covered by numerous artists and featured in equally numerous films.

Posted in: Skyfall