Muskrat Ramble from Louis Armstrong

Muskrat Ramble from Louis Armstrong with some bathing beauties from the 1920s in the background.

  

Various Artists: The Best of Bond…James Bond

Albums like The Best of Bond…James Bond are tough to critique; on one hand, this album was released with a near-identical track listing back in 2002 (the 2008 version replaces Moby with Chris Cornell and k.d. lang), which means the 2008 issue is just an opportunistic cash grab. On the other hand, the contents of both albums are impeccable. Louis Armstrong, Shirley Bassey (three times), Paul McCartney, Duran Duran, Carly Simon, A-ha (don’t laugh, their theme for “The Living Daylights” is one of the most underrated Bond themes ever), and Tom Jones on one disc? That is 16 different flavors of awesome, right there. Of course, the album doesn’t feature “Another Way to Die,” Jack White and Alicia Keys’ theme for “Quantum of Solace,” but don’t worry; that will surely appear on the 2014 issue of this album. See our problem with this? It’s good stuff – but its existence is awfully cynical, too. (Capitol)

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