Website URL:
   Homepage

Accessibility links

     * Skip to content
     * Accessibility Help

   BBC Account
   Notifications
   
     * Home
     * News
     * Sport
     * Weather
     * iPlayer
     * Sounds
     * CBBC
     * CBeebies
     * Food
     * Bitesize
     * Arts
     * Taster
     * Local
     * TV
     * Radio
     * Three
     * Menu

   Search
   News 

BBC News Navigation

   
   Sections
   
     * Home 
     * Video 
     * World 
     * US & Canada 
     * UK 
     * Business 
     * Tech 
     * Science 
     * Stories 
     * Entertainment & Arts  selected
     * Health 
     * In Pictures 
     * Reality Check 
     * World News TV 
     * Newsbeat 
     * Special Reports 
     * Explainers 
     * The Reporters 
     * Have Your Say 

   Entertainment & Arts
   Entertainment & Arts

No Time To Die: The verdict on Billie Eilish's James Bond theme

   By Mark Savage BBC music reporter
     * 14 February 2020
     * comments

     * Share this with Facebook 
     * Share this with Messenger 
     * Share this with Twitter 
     * Share this with Email 
     * Share this with Facebook 
     * Share this with WhatsApp 
     * Share this with Messenger 
     * Share this with Twitter 
     * Share 
       Share this with
       These are external links and will open in a new window
          + Email
            Share this with Email 
          + Facebook
            Share this with Facebook 
          + Messenger
            Share this with Messenger 
          + Messenger
            Share this with Messenger 
          + Twitter
            Share this with Twitter 
          + Pinterest
            Share this with Pinterest 
          + WhatsApp
            Share this with WhatsApp 
          + LinkedIn
            Share this with LinkedIn 
       Copy this link
       https://www.bbc.com/news/entertainment-arts-51489795
       Read more about sharing.
       These are external links and will open in a new window
       (BUTTON) Close share panel

   Billie Eilish Image copyright Reuters Image caption Billie Eilish is the youngest artist ever to record a Bond theme

   Billie Eilish's theme for the new James Bond film is a dramatic, unsettling ballad that hints the plot will centre around the secret agent's betrayal.

   The lyrics to No Time To Die reference lies and deceit, as Eilish sings: "You were never on my side."

   The song was released at 00:00 GMT, at the same time as the latest trailer for the film, starring Daniel Craig.

   Eilish, who turned 18 in December, is the youngest singer ever to record a theme for the franchise.

   Its release was highly anticipated at the end of a week that saw her performing to a worldwide TV audience at the Oscars.
   Image Copyright BillieEilishVEVO BillieEilishVEVO
   [url:http://mobile.myiridium.net/proxy?https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/contact-us/editorial]Report
   Youtube post by BillieEilishVEVO: Billie Eilish - No Time To Die (Audio) Image Copyright BillieEilishVEVO BillieEilishVEVO
   Report
   

   No Time To Die opens with a haunting piano motif, with the star's voice weary as she sings, "I should have known I'd leave alone".

   A familiar tremolo guitar ushers in the chorus, where the singer develops her theme: "I've fallen for a lie... Are you death or paradise?"

   "Now you'll never see me cry," she concludes. "There's just no time to die."

   The words seem to confirm a fan theory that Daniel Craig's final outing as Bond will see him double-crossed by Madeleine Swann (Lea Seydoux), his love interest from the previous film, Spectre.

Off-kilter

   Eilish wrote and produced the title song with her elder brother Finneas O'Connell late last year. Speaking at the Grammys in January, she said working on the franchise had always been one of their goals.

   "Subconsciously and consciously, we've been trying to write a Bond theme for our whole lives," she told E! News.
     * Billie Eilish is the big winner at the Grammys
     * What we learned from the first James Bond trailer
     * James Bond's greatest hits - and biggest misses

   Shrewdly, the duo retain their dark, off-kilter style throughout the song, while incorporating several of the film series' musical touchstones - swelling strings, discordant brass, and, best of all, it finishes with the distinctive minor 9th chord that closes out Monty Norman's original Bond theme.

   Lyrically, they touch upon the psychological toll of 007's licence to kill, with the observation: "The blood you bleed is just the blood you owe".

   But the song is very much about a romantic betrayal. "Was I stupid to love you? / Was I reckless to help?" asks Eilish in the bridge.

   The musician is known for her intimate, designed-for-headphone vocal style, but she rises to the challenge of the song's soaring climax, with her early vulnerability transforming into strength and resolve.

   It's easily the most audacious and atmospheric take on the Bond theme in recent memory.
   Image copyright Universal Image caption No Time To Die marks Daniel Craig's swansong as James Bond

   Eilish will give her first live performance of the song at next week's Brit Awards, accompanied by composer Hans Zimmer and former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr.

   The singer is up for best international female at the ceremony; just two weeks after sweeping all four of the main categories at the Grammys.
   [p081hpff.jpg]
   Media playback is unsupported on your device
   Media captionBillie Eilish says "anything is possible" after making history at the Grammys

   No Time To Die could also earn her another trophy: The last two Bond themes, Adele's Skyfall and Sam Smith's Writing's On The Wall, both won an Oscar.

   No Time To Die, the film, is due to hit cinemas in April.

   Alongside Craig and Seydoux, it stars Lashana Lynch, as a 00 agent who entered the service after Bond's retirement; and Rami Malek as the villain Safin.

   It has been written by the regular Bond team of Neal Purvis and Robert Wade, with additional material from director Cary Joji Fukunaga and Fleabag star Phoebe Waller-Bridge.

What did other people make of it?

   The Independent labelled the Grammy winner's Bond theme as "one of the best we've had in some time".

   "The flourish of violins, electronic guitar and faint brass all pay tribute to classic Bond theme tropes, but Eilish's subtle synth motif makes this song her own," wrote Roisin O'Connor.

   The Guardian described the track "a Bond theme befitting of the Craig era".

   "The pop sensation sidelines her trademarks for a tasteful track that matches the haunted solitude of its leading man," said Alexis Petridis.

   Eilish's "downbeat noir is spine-tingling", according to The Telegraph's Neil McCormick.

   Finally, BBC entertainment correspondent Colin Paterson tweeted he thought the track was the "first serious Oscar contender for next year".

   Fans of Sir Elton John, who won the best song Oscar last weekend, should look away now, though... because Paterson added the track was "better than any song nominated this year".

   The song's release was marked with a one-hour special on BBC Radio 1. You can hear the full show on BBC Sounds.

   Follow us on Facebook, or on Twitter @BBCNewsEnts. If you have a story suggestion email entertainment.news@bbc.co.uk.
   View comments 

Related Topics

     * James Bond
     * Film
     * Billie Eilish
     * Music

Share this story About sharing

     * Email 
     * Facebook 
     * Messenger 
     * Messenger 
     * Twitter 
     * Pinterest 
     * WhatsApp 
     * LinkedIn 

More on this story

     * Billie Eilish to sing the new James Bond theme
       14 January 2020
       
     * James Bond's greatest hits - and biggest misses
       15 January 2020
       
     * Billie Eilish is the big winner at the Grammys
       27 January 2020
       
     * Video Billie Eilish says 'anything is possible' after making history at the Grammys
       27 January 2020
       
     * No Time To Die: First trailer for new James Bond film debuts
       4 December 2019
       

Top Stories

   Venice Carnival closes amid coronavirus outbreak

   Italy quarantines whole towns, closes schools and cancels sports fixtures as infections increase.
   23 February 2020
    Medical masks at Philippines mass wedding
   23 February 2020
    Nevada caucuses: Who won and who lost?
   23 February 2020
   

Features

   

Dead within three hours of arrival at a Russian prison

   
   

Dubs or subs? Parasite renews the debate

   
   

Nevada - winners and losers

   
   
   Video

Hip-hop's iconic photos go on display

   
   

Wallis Simpson's hard lessons for Harry and Meghan

   
   

The potential diplomatic impact of coronavirus

   
   

What will Trump's visit do for US-India ties?

   
   
   Video

Simone Biles on abuse, race and life after gymnastics

   
   

Could the Big Bang have created a hidden 'twin' Universe?

   

Elsewhere on the BBC

   

Football phrases

   

   15 sayings from around the world
   Full article Football phrases
   Why you can trust BBC News

BBC News Navigation

   Sections
     * Home 
     * Video 
     * World 
          + World Home
          + Africa
          + Asia
          + Australia
          + Europe
          + Latin America
          + Middle East
     * US & Canada 
          + US & Canada Home
     * UK 
          + UK Home
          + England
          + N. Ireland
          + Scotland
          + Wales
          + Politics
     * Business 
          + Business Home
          + Market Data
          + Global Trade
          + Companies
          + Entrepreneurship
          + Technology of Business
          + Connected World
          + Global Education
          + Economy
     * Tech 
     * Science 
     * Stories 
     * Entertainment & Arts  selected
     * Health 
     * In Pictures 
     * Reality Check 
     * World News TV 
     * Newsbeat 
     * Special Reports 
     * Explainers 
     * The Reporters 
     * Have Your Say 

BBC News Services

     * On your mobile
     * On smart speakers
     * Get news alerts
     * Contact BBC News

Explore the BBC

     * Home
     * News
     * Sport
     * Weather
     * iPlayer
     * Sounds
     * CBBC
     * CBeebies
     * Food
     * Bitesize
     * Arts
     * Taster
     * Local
     * TV
     * Radio
     * Three

     * Terms of Use
     * About the BBC
     * Privacy Policy
     * Cookies
     * Accessibility Help
     * Parental Guidance
     * Contact the BBC
     * Get Personalised Newsletters

   Copyright © 2020 BBC. The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read about our approach to external linking.