Varese Sarabande (302 066 287 2)
Release Date: 2001
Conducted by David Michael Frank
The City of Prague Orchestra
|2.||Who Is The MOLE?||4:41|
|8.||The Unusual Suspects||3:29|
|10.||The Clock Is Ticking||3:53|
|11.||Nighttime In Paris||1:39|
|17.||Taking The Bait||1:09|
|24.||Lap Of Luxury||3:20|
|26.||Traveling In Circles||3:30|
|Total Album Time:||73:37|
|by Dan Goldwasser
September 18, 2001
After the success of "Survivor", the television networks scrambled to find more "reality-based" television shows. Most of them were pretty simple - throw a bunch of people into a particular situation and see what happens. There really didn't seem to be much thought needed, unless you had to contemplate the moral issues inherent in swallowing a live insect. One show, however, really forced its contestants to think. "The Mole" was a game all about espionage and secrecy, with the players trying to find out who the double-agent is that is trying to sabotage their successes in the various challenges. How hard are these challenges? Let's just say that American MENSA is thanked in the show! Based on the original hit Belgian television show, the producers called upon composer David Michael Frank to provide the new music for the US version.
The "Main Title" makes no excuses for the fact that this show is a "sleuth" game - with blaring brass and sweeping strings and an underlying percussion rhythm, it's a definite throwback to the spy films of the 1960s, with a slightly modern edge. After that, we enter the realm of the "library cues". Much of the original show was scored with movie music, and David Michael Frank leans rather heavily on the style and mood of the films scores - but still retains his own air of originality and freshness. "Who Is The MOLE?" is a slinky piece of work that evokes mystery and intrigue. "Brain Game" is a bit more upbeat and plodding, while "Captured" is sneaky and military-edged.
From dark contemporary cues ("Sabotage", "The Clock is Ticking", "The Execution", "The Arrival", "Deception") to softer more intimate cues ("Sad Farewell", "Reunion", "Floating") and even hard action cues ("Heroic Jump", "The Fortress", "The Rescue"), Frank shows off his wide variety of styles and it's quite an impressive range. There are even some "regional" cues, such as "Nighttime in Paris" (replete with accordion), "Sancti Petri" (a rather "Zorro"-esque piece), and "Lap Of Luxury", an elegant romp reminding me of a New York shopping spree down 5th Avenue. Whimsical cues like "Dirty Laundry" and "751 Sheep" highlight Frank's comedic skills. Overall, this is quite a promotional album for Frank; if you want to get a sense of his abilities, look no further than this album.
Running a solid 75-minutes, this album has pretty much has it all - tense action, soft drama, light comedy - it's all here. With a restatement of the main theme in the "End Credits", this satisfying and diverse album comes to a close. If you haven't heard of Frank or his music, this CD is definitely one to check out - you'll be pleasantly surprised. With that, I'm now looking forward to the next series: "The Mole 2: The Next Betrayal".
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