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Tuesday, May 15, 2007

CD REVIEW - Missione Speciale Lady Chaplin + News from Costa Communications

Missione Speciale Lady Chaplin
Music by Bruno Nicolai
Digitmovies CDDM082 (Italy)
27 Tracks 70:07 mins

This 1966 spy thriller is part of Italy's answer to the popularity of the genre in the UK and the States during these years, when James Bond, Derek Flint and Matt Helm were all the rage.
Here we have CIA special agent Dick Malloy (Ken Clark) on the case, and a genuine link with the Bond series in particular is the presence in the cast of Bond girl Daniela Bianchi (From Russia With Love).
The music is by Bruno Nicolai, and is not the only score he provided for such films. It is largely jazz-swing based, as were a number of the UK/US scores, although these were generally in a more poppy style.
The Dick Malloy theme is a splendid swinging jazz theme and crops up in variations throughout this lengthy score, never outsaying its welcome. There are a number of other jazzy pieces, sometimes attached to the theme, and "Lady Shake" is a particular highlight - real music to spy by. By contrast, there is a lush stringed romantic theme, first heard in "Arabella," that also makes its presence felt throughout, and a number of easy listening dance tracks.
On the less tuneful side, there are quite a few suspenseful and mysterious moments, the latter mostly involving eerie vibraphone and electric organ, plus plenty of tense and dramatic action, often utilising snippets of the main themes . In short, it's a fine genre score that, despite its length, really doesn't outstay its welcome.
Recorded in very good mono sound, as always, Digitmovies releases come with colourful and informative accompanying booklets. This is no exception, with plenty of colour stills and original artwork, plus Claudio Fuiano's notes on the film and score.

From Costa Communications

"Dreamgirls"& "Spider-Man 3"

(Los Angeles, CA) Over the past few years, Deborah Lurie has quietly become attached to the biggest blockbusters. Her musical arrangements and original compositions have repeatedly made their way to the top of the Billboard and Box Office charts. Just this year alone, her string arrangements can be heard on the top-selling releases from RCA's rock band Daughtry and the motion picture soundtrack for Golden Globe's Best Picture and the #1 selling DVD, "Dreamgirls." She also composed additional underscore for the film, adding to an increasingly influential role as a film composer which also found her collaborating this year on the #1 film in the world, "Spider-Man 3," as she did with "Spider-Man 2."
Since first gaining recognition for her score to Joe Nussbaum's cult classic, "George Lucas in Love," Lurie has quickly become a strikingly versatile and critically acclaimed rising voice on the Hollywood music scene. She is known for strongly thematic and memorable scores that impart unique character to a wide array of styles--from symphonic music to hard rock. Her original scores range from Lasse Hallstrom's "An Unfinished Life" to MGM's "Sleepover," and the upcoming Warner Brothers comedy "Spring Breakdown."
In addition to her original scores, Lurie is known for high-profile collaborations, beginning when she reunited with "George Lucas in Love" director Joe Nussbaum in 2004, to score the pre-teen comedy "Sleepover" for MGM. For the score, Lurie wrote parts for a 50-piece orchestra and co-write a pop love song, "Remember," with Gabriel Mann. Since then, Lurie has been a frequent collaborator of Danny Elfman. She composed additional music for the IMAX film "Deep Sea: 3D" starring Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet; and arranged/orchestrated on "Charlotte's Web" and "Charlie and The Chocolate Factory." She has also collaborated numerous times with composer John Ottman, composing the score for "Imaginary Heroes" based on Ottman's theme and arranging music for blockbusters such as "X2."
Other recent arranging credits include the top selling album by The All-American Rejects, hard rockers Papa Roach, and the chart topping band Three Days Grace. Beginning with the #1 hit single "The Reason," Lurie has collaborated on two CDs with the band Hoobastank, as well as an orchestral live concert and DVD in Paris. Lurie's longest and most prolific collaboration in rock music is with producer Howard Benson, Grammy nominated this year for Producer Of The Year. Lurie's work in pop/rock music began with musical productions for the live stage, including arranging/producing the music for The Pussycat Dolls live at The Roxy, starring Christina Aguilera and Gwen Stefani among others and arranging/producing the music for the Off Broadway musical bare.


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