Henry Mancini’s well-loved ‘Pink Panther’
theme forms the ‘Main Title’ with some slight variation treatment in Latin and Palm Court orchestra and up-beat jazz styles. From there its composer Christophe Beck
employing tremolando strings, crazy synth poundings, quirky ostinatos,
and hints of that James Bond theme for a ‘Perfect day for A Murder’ before a
bumbling, tripping arrival of Clouseau in ‘The Damburger Incident’. Outraged
pomposity in lower woodwinds and brass signals the long-suffering ‘Dreyfus In
Charge’, while ‘Paris Bound’ has Manicini’s theme given to a throaty saxophone
with cheeky comments from guitar and synths. ‘The Airport’ is quietly tense
mickey-mousing with featured bongos, castanets, snare drums and pizzicato
The above descriptions of the opening six
tracks are typical of the rest of the twenty-two tracks of this album. All are
written by Beck with the same tongue-in-cheek, wry humour and clever
orchestrational effects that Mancini brought to his Pink Panther scores.
Additionally, Beck gives us some nicely romantic and quietly introspective
material to balance all Clouseau’s headlong madness.
A colourful, witty confection that would
have delighted Mancini, probably quite tricky to play with its quicksilver
changes of rhythms, styles and moods, but performed with polish and zest and
recorded in excellent sound.