WRONG BOX, THE

Label: Intrada Special Collection Volume ISC 191
Date: 1966
Time: 0:59:03
Tracks: 17
World premiere release of complete John Barry score for top-drawer 1966 Bryan Forbes black comedy with incomparable cast: John Mills, Ralph Richardson, Michael Caine, Peter Cook, Dudley Moore, Peter Sellers. Written during fertile period that includes THUNDERBALL, IPCRESS FILE, BORN FREE, QUILLER MEMORANDUM, Barry creates warm, lilting major-key waltz theme for Victorian England setting, then surrounds with variety of flavorful ideas both fun, dramatic. In latter portion of score, Barry introduces dizzying orchestral romp for wild hearse sequences. At time of release, Mainstream label issues 29-minute soundtrack album. In later years, stereo LP becomes arguably Barry's rarest, most-sought collector's item. Actual LP masters have long since vanished so this portion of Intrada CD is mastered from mint condition stereo copy of album. Fortunately, Sony vaults contained complete 1/4" session tapes in mono, allowing us to offer world premiere suites with some 20-minutes of never-before-released cues. Extra bonus from Mainstream vaults: one reel of original unedited 1/2" 3-track stereo session masters actually survives, allowing us to include two newly remixed cues. Amongst new musical highlights is both mono, stereo premiere of complete "Montage Of Deaths" cue plus additional music for rousing "Hackett Funeral" sequence. Delicious notes from Nick Redman plus both original artwork campaign, 1966 album cover complete fun package. John Barry conducts. Intrada Special Collection release available while quantities and interest remain! SOLD OUT!

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  • More Info
  • Track List
  • Doug's Tech Talk
  • Musicians List
  • World premiere release of complete John Barry score for top-drawer 1966 Bryan Forbes black comedy with incomparable cast: John Mills, Ralph Richardson, Michael Caine, Peter Cook, Dudley Moore, Peter Sellers. Written during fertile period that includes THUNDERBALL, IPCRESS FILE, BORN FREE, QUILLER MEMORANDUM, Barry creates warm, lilting major-key waltz theme for Victorian England setting, then surrounds with variety of flavorful ideas both fun, dramatic. In latter portion of score, Barry introduces dizzying orchestral romp for wild hearse sequences. At time of release, Mainstream label issues 29-minute soundtrack album. In later years, stereo LP becomes arguably Barry's rarest, most-sought collector's item. Actual LP masters have long since vanished so this portion of Intrada CD is mastered from mint condition stereo copy of album. Fortunately, Sony vaults contained complete 1/4" session tapes in mono, allowing us to offer world premiere suites with some 20-minutes of never-before-released cues. Extra bonus from Mainstream vaults: one reel of original unedited 1/2" 3-track stereo session masters actually survives, allowing us to include two newly remixed cues. Amongst new musical highlights is both mono, stereo premiere of complete "Montage Of Deaths" cue plus additional music for rousing "Hackett Funeral" sequence. Delicious notes from Nick Redman plus both original artwork campaign, 1966 album cover complete fun package. John Barry conducts. Intrada Special Collection release available while quantities and interest remain!
  • Play all clips

    Original 1966 Soundtrack Album In Stereo = 29:08
    01. Main Title (2:46)
    02. Montage Of Deaths (2:08)
    03. Yes, Who Is That? (1:32)
    04. Strangler (3:15)
    05. Responsible For Bringing Us Together (1:11)
    06. God Save Us/Pedantic, Boring, Old (1:52)
    07. Morris Visits Dr. Pratt (0:58)
    08. Morris Hides As He Sees Handcart (2:31)
    09. Tontine Box Is Put On Hearse (1:39)
    10. Only A Bird In A Gilded Cage (Von Tilzer) (2:46)
    11. Michael & Julia On Hearse (1:48)
    12. Hackett Funeral And Fight (3:51)
    13. Bournemouth Strangler (2:26)

    Previously Unreleased Music In Mono = 21:50
    14. Suite No. 1 (10:17)
    [Main Title; Montage Of Deaths/Rhino Safari/I Believe You Are Too;
    Well That's What I'll Do Then/Julie Runs From From Front Door;
    Morris Takes Candle; God Save Us! Tag]
    15. Suite No. 2 (11:28)
    [Good Day Cousin; Peacock Looks At Body; -Sequence;
    I Was Not Always; Salvation Army Major-Masterman; Finish]

    Two Takes From Three-Track Stereo Session Master = 7:54
    16. 1M1 T8 "Main Title" (2:59)
    17. 1M2 T2 "Montage Of Deaths/Rhino Safari/I Believe You Are Too" (4:55)

    Total CD Time = 59:03

  • Tech Talk From The Producer…

    We are happy to present all of John Barry’s music for Bryan Forbes’ highly regarded 1966 film, The Wrong Box. In 1966, Mainstream Records released a relatively brief 29 minutes of the score on a stereo LP. We have presented this identical program as the first part of our CD.

    In addition to the cues on the album, however, Barry scored approximately twenty minutes of music for the film that did not appear on the LP. Some of these are gorgeous variants on the main theme and were probably not included on the LP in order to keep it from running beyond thirty minutes. In addition to these cues, much of the additional score is comprised of short stingers, codas and various transition pieces, often running a minute or less. Barry ingeniously scored these smaller ideas to work within the major key centers and orchestrations of the longer cues, allowing them to be used either as introductions or codas to the longer cues. As such, we felt a much better listening experience could be had by assembling all of the new music into longer “suites”, rather than having them simply appear as numerous tiny fragments. These suites don’t just comprise a “more music from” of sorts, but play as fluid, wholly enjoyable listening experiences themselves.

    All of the music in both suites is previously unreleased with two exceptions. To assist in having these suites function as a listening experience unto themselves, we have included the Main Title at the opening of the first suite and the End Title (titled “Bournemouth Strangler” on the LP) as a conclusion to the second.

    One previously unreleased cue deserves a spotlight: For the early “Montage Of Deaths” sequence in the film, Barry wrote a terrific cue running nearly five minutes, composed with a built-in break (known as a “grand pause”) after the first two minutes. Only those first two minutes appeared on the original album, so we are happy to include the remaining portion, immediately following the Main Title on “Suite No.1”. (It is also premiered in stereo as track 17 from the scoring session masters as described below.)

    The other major set-piece is unquestionably the Hackett Funeral sequence. Here, Barry created one of his finest musical romps, complete with swirling allegro string ostinati and infectious trumpet phrases. He included much of the sequence on the original album, but edited numerous bars and inserted some inventive repeats of others. For this reason, we have included the sequence as originally recorded. While much of it covers territory heard on the LP, there are some delicious new bars to enjoy.

    As the album masters have long since vanished, the source tapes for the original album presentation are digital transfers from a mint condition stereo copy of the Mainstream LP. Audio restoration was performed using the Sonic Solutions “NoNoise” system. The previously unreleased suites were mastered from pristine condition ¼” 15 ips full track mono tapes vaulted at Sony Pictures Entertainment and transferred by Chace Audio, the highly-praised outfit responsible for countless audio restorations designed for the home video market.

    Tracks 16 & 17 are true stereo mixes from the actual ½” 15 ips three-channel scoring session masters, transferred from the only surviving reel of original scoring session tapes (reel 1 of 9) that has survived, stored in the Mainstream records vaults. These offer both the “Main Title” and the complete “Montage Of Deaths” cues in superb stereo audio. Original engineering voice slates are included to enhance the preservation of these two historical recordings.

    One final note regarding the original stereo LP mix. While mastered in true stereo, the original 1966 album engineers mixed the three-channel scoring session master tapes into a two-channel stereo mix that favored the center and right channels. It was not possible to increase the left channel without seriously hampering the balance and image already in place. As such we have retained the center/left channel-heavy stereo balance as presented on the Mainstream LP.

    So enjoy now the delightful music John Barry wrote for The Wrong Box. It was composed during that especially fertile period when the composer’s choice music for spy thrillers was at its zenith. Hits such as Thunderball, The Ipcress File and The Quiller Memorandum were grabbing attention… the incomparable Oscar-winning Born Free was headlining… and You Only Live Twice and The Lion In Winter were looming on the horizon. The Wrong Box sits with grand company indeed.

    —Douglass Fake