Burning The Ground: DjPaulT's 80's and 90's Remixes

80's and 90's 12 Inch Mixes

a-ha – The Living Daylights (German 12″)

Posted by DjPaulT on March 26th, 2011


“The Living Daylights” is the song performed by A-ha for the James Bond film of the same name. It was co-written by guitarist Paul Waaktaar-Savoy and Bond composer John Barry.

Barry was listed on the credits as co-writer and producer, and the initial release of the song was his version. A second version of the song, re-worked by A-ha in 1988, later appeared on their third album, Stay on These Roads. Not surprisingly, the band prefers their version of the song to Barry’s.

When interviewed on a late-night show in 1987, Barry said that he found working with the band exhausting secondary to the band’s insistence on using their own version of the song for release. In an interview with Hotrod Magazine, keyboardist Magne Furuholmen said that “[the band’s] fight with Barry left a rather unpleasant aftertaste. Apparently he compared us to Hitlerjugend in a newspaper interview.” Waaktaar-Savoy claims that Barry never contributed to the creative process, and should not have his name on the credits.

“The Living Daylights” was released in the summer of 1987 and has become one of the most successful singles ever to be released by a-ha on the rock charts. The song didn’t chart on the Billboard Hot 100, but it charted in the United Kingdom where it peaked at number five. It also remains a favourite with Bond fans.

The song remains one of a-ha ‘s most played songs in live concerts and has often been extended into a sing-along with the audience, as featured on the live album How Can I Sleep with Your Voice in My Head. In live performances, Paul Waaktaar-Savoy often included the James Bond Theme in his guitar solo.

Evan Cater of Allmusic said the song was “a strong sample of Seven and the Ragged Tiger-influenced Europop, enhanced by Morten Harket’s powerhouse falsetto vocals.”

The single sold over 2 million copies worldwide.

The Living Daylights (Extended Version) 6:50

The Living Daylights (7 Inch Version) 4:15
The Living Daylights (Instrumental) 4:41

Vinyl: Near Mint
Cover: Near Mint


Year Single Chart Position
1987 The Living Daylights U.S. Billboard Hot 100 Did Not Chart


Label: Warner Bros. Records
Catalog#: 920 736-0
Format: Vinyl, 12″
Country: Germany
Released: 1987
Genre: Electronic, Pop
Style: Synth-pop
Credits: Artwork By – Bill Smith Studio
Photography – Paul Rider
Producer – Jason Corsaro , Mags (2)
Written-By, Producer – John Barry , Pal Waaktaar*

From the Warner Bros. album “The Living Daylights/Original Motion Picture Soundtrack”

Find the 12″ on DISCOGS

Turntable: Pro-Ject Debut III
Cartridge: Ortofon Super
Stylus: Ortofon OM Stylus 30
Bellari VP130 Tube Phono Preamp
Soundcard: ESI Juli@
VPI HW 16.5 Record Cleaning Machine
Brother MFC-6490CW Professional Series Scanner

Adobe Audition 3.0 (Recording)
Adobe Photoshop CS5
Playlist Creator

All vinyl rips are recorded @ 32bit/float
Downsampled to 24bit/96kHz and16bit /44kHz using iZotope RX Advanced 2
FLAC (Level Eight)
MP3 (320kbps)
Artwork scanned at 600dpi

PW: burningtheground

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15 Responses to “a-ha – The Living Daylights (German 12″)”

  1. silverblue Says:

    One of my favourite a-ha tracks, and always a disappointment that it failed to chart in the US. Thanks so much, Paul!


  2. Sergio Says:

    Great song. Thanks!!!


  3. dj_alex Says:

    excelente post tyvm great song but terrible movie..lol


  4. Orlando Says:

    I remember this song was a failure in my country. I got it through a friend because it was difficult to find the soundtrack. In fact, I don’t remember ever seeing in stores. Well, thanks again Paul for another great deja vu.


  5. Bookwormwa Says:

    Paul, excellente … I’m fascinated by all things Bond.


  6. Christopher™ Says:

    It’s unfortunate that this track didn’t chart in the US. It’s one of the better recent Bond songs (compared to the train wreck that was the theme to “Quantum of Solace”). And the movie wasn’t terrible at all. A bit overlong, but it had some great moments in it, not to mention John Barry’s lush, romantic score (his last for the series). Alas, he will never get the chance to do it again now.


  7. ric Says:

    still baffles me to this day why it didn’t chart in the US at all…not even a sniff at the number 100


  8. ra1apm Says:

    Amazing tracks, Felicitaciones DJPaulT y gracias por compartir los maravillosos 80’s


  9. Westline Says:

    Thanks for this. I read the blurb on it about Waaktaar-Savoy saying Barry never contributed to the creative process. He must have been high or something. This has John Barry pasted all over it. I do prefer the seven inch version though to the 12 inch. The 7 has more John Barry horns to it.

    Great song though…and Dalton was indeed a great Bond too.


  10. McDoC Says:

    I had this on cassette back in the 80’s. The tape is worn out now, THANKS so much Paul for sharing this. CHEERS!!!


  11. Martin Frick Says:

    Hallo, Paul! Thanks for your good work and posts! Can you re-post a-ha’s “Train of Thought” from your old Blog? I did not have download it that time! All the Best from mannheim/Germany! Martin


  12. Nicholas Says:

    First of all – Thanks for your amazing blog. The quality and presentation are outstanding and I believe you provide a service for people who love music.

    I am leaving my first comment on this post as a-ha are/were my fav band. From what I gather, John Barry expected the group to take a back seat during the recording of the record. Unfortunately both him and the 3 band members are hugely talented people with large ego’s. A-ha had worked on the track before his involvement and probably expected a to be working with JB as more of a collaboration – who knows? Paul Waaktaar-Savoy and the others have since said in interviews that they appreciate what he added saying “I loved the stuff he added to the track, I mean it gave it this really cool string arrangement. That’s when for me it started to sound like a Bond thing”.

    I think the band let the grudge go but not sure about John Barry. I don’t think it helped that the band didn’t show up for the film premiere.

    Other bands wanted to record a title track. I have a ‘Living Daylights’ song by Pet Shop Boys.


  13. Antonios Karatzikos Says:

    Hi Paul!

    Is there any chance that we can have the 12 inch remix of ” Take On Me”? As far as I know this has never surfaced on cd so it would be really nice if we had a crystal clear rip from you!



    DjPaulT Reply:

    Antonios I will see what i can do. Just keep cheking back you never know when it will appear :0


  14. Junior Says:

    Great song. Thanks Paul!


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