Thursday, July 08, 2010

Back to the Cave

In the course of my seemingly interminable archeological excavations at my parents' basement, I recently unearthed a forgotten treasure that I am now listening to: Batman Theme & 11 Hefti Bat Songs, the sort-of original soundtrack from the Batman television series of the mid-1960s, composed and conducted by Neal Hefti.

Not only had I forgotten the album, I had forgotten how good it is.

Looking past the camp titles of some of the cuts--"Holy Diploma, Batman--Straight A's"; "My Fine Feathered Finks"--and concentrating on the music itself, one discovers a pleasant, blues-infused jazz album that is simultaneously a product of its time and completely listenable-to today.

Even the much maligned and much parodied "Batman Theme" itself is surprisingly complex and pleasantly smooth. In its long form on the album, sans the biff! and pow! sound effects that punctuated the much shorter TV-opening version, the theme is a tight, bluesy number, and somehow the vocal repetition of the word "Batman" is less comic-bookish than in the short version, and even has an edge of danger to it.

It's not often one pulls out something from his childhood and finds it as good as he remembered. It's virtually unprecedented that he revisits something from those days and finds it better than he remembered.

No comments: