The Ipcress File [Original Soundtrack]

John Barry

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The Ipcress File [Original Soundtrack] Review

by Stephen Cook

With the music to such James Bond classics as From Russia With Love and Goldfinger already under his belt, John Barry switched intrigue gears a bit with this soundtrack to the British spy thriller The Ipcress File, starring Michael Caine as novelist Len Deighton's government sleuth, Harry Palmer. And while Barry utilizes some of his Bond tricks here -- dramatic atmospherics and noirish exotica -- he makes the music more compact by often eschewing lush string charts in favor of dark instrumental tones, extended jazz solos, and a healthy dose of bongos. Sure, the blaring brass and tense lounge strains heard in many a Bond theme are present, but Barry seems to make it all swing more, expanding the mix with waltz rhythms and some West Coast jazz touches. An essential title for all Barry fans.

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