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Friday, December 23, 2005

CD REVIEWS - La Frusta e il Corpo/Sei Donne per L'Assassino & Le Cactus

La Frusta e il Corpo/Sei Donne per L'Assassino
Music by Carlo Rustichelli
Digitmovies CDDM041
Disc 1 - 21 Tracks 61:07 mins Disc 2 - 19 Tracks 39:40 mins

Another great 2-disc set from Digitmovies, this time featuring two Carlo Rustichelli scores for the films of Mario Bava.
Disc One features the complete score, in fine mono sound, for 1963's La Frusta e il Corpo, which features Christopher Lee as a sadistic ghost and contains a lovely piano and orchestra love theme, which became known as the "Windsor Concerto," and which Rustichelli considered one of his finest compositions, so much so that he later authorised a concert version of the theme, which is featured as a bonus track at the end of the disc. The theme itself crops up throughout the score in variations, the best of which is the fullest score version in Track 13. Much of the rest of the score is dark, suspenseful and menacing, so the love theme comes as quite a relief when it appears.
Disc Two features Rustichelli's complete score, in stereo, for the following year's Sei Donne per L'Assassino, a more conventional murder thriller, which sports an infectious latin jazz main theme with trumpet lead. Again, its re-appearance is very welcome, passionately on strings in Defile and even when played by Hammond organ as on Sospetti, with a final spectacular appearance for Hammond organ, fluttering strings and then trumpet on the final score track Il Volto Dell'Assassino. In between the score is again mostly suspenseful and menacing.
As a bonus, both sides of the original C.A.M. single in mono, and a version of the main theme, without trumpet, round out the disc.
As always, a colourful and informative booklet accompanies the set, and features an appreciation of and interview with the composer by Tim Lucas.

Coming soon to ScreenSounds. Watch out for my reviews of the latest releases from Digitmovies - Fiorenzo Carpi's Un Bianco Vestito per Mariale, Stelvio Cipriani's Blindman and the pairing of the same composer's Ecologia del Delitto and Gli Orrori del Castello di Norimberga in another impressive 2-CD set.

Le Cactus
Music by Michel Munz and various artists
Milan 301 732-2 (France)

Milan kindly sent me a promo of this disc, but I'm afraid it is likely to be of little interest to score enthusiasts, featuring as it does only three instrumentals - two by Munz, an upbeat electronica main theme and a brief overture, which begins mysteriously then guitar and strings move it along to its climax. The other track is by Aldo Crianza and Will Corner and is a catchy enough mix of traditional Indian instruments and a steady pop backing.
The remainder of the album is given over to Indian songs, mostly in the Bollywood tradition, performed by various artists.
They also sent me a single from the film La Vie est a Nous!, a pleasant enough song by Moira Conrath, but let's hope Alexandre Azaria's score album is forthcoming. Azaria is beginning to attract attention internationally, following his work on Fanfan la Tulipe, Les Dalton and Transporter 2.


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