Milano: Il Clan Dei Calabresi

Milano_clan_calabresi_DDJ002Once again the BEAT records company come up trumps with another fantastic sounding soundtrack from the supreme silver age of Italian film music.  I have for many years championed the music of Gianni Marchetti, as in my ever so humble opinion he is one of the unsung heroes of music for Italian cinema, one of those composers who made great contributions to this quirky, dramatic and at times surreal world of film but never really received the recognition he so richly deserved. One can just tell from the outset of this soundtrack that it is one that will savoured and devoured by all serious collectors of music all, a italiana for the cinema. It is a hard hitting slice of scoring in which the composers puts to effective use various stock instrumentation that have become the calling card of many a Italian Maestro, i.e.; powerful sounding piano, harmonica, driving underlying strings, harpsichord, vibes, female voice (which is quite subtle and understated in this case),  whistling, mysterious sounding woods, jaws harp, electric guitar passages that are at times fuzzy sounding and fast paced percussion, all of which in this particular case are combined and intertwined on occasion with funky sounding backing and infectious thematic properties that not only suit the film perfectly but also have the ability to be entertaining and engrossing as stand alone pieces.  The composers obvious gift for producing melodic and catchy musical phrases and passages becomes apparent early on in the score and pays off big time for the listener,  the central themes for the score re-occur throughout the work but are given a bright and fresh sound on each outing by the composers inventive and innovative skills as an arranger. Amongst the many cues on the compact disc we are treated to some lighter and laid back sections in which the composer employs an easy listening almost sleazy sound which too is effective, creating that dim lit night club atmosphere with a meandering almost improvised piano solo backed by lazy sounding percussion that is punctuated by an uncomplicated double bass that marks time in a deliberate and systematic fashion. For me this is a wonderful score by Marchetti, and I feel that we as film music collectors have been missing out because of the unavailability of this composers work on any type of recording, maybe now the vaults at Italian record companies are becoming slightly less congested compared to what they were a few years back, Marchetti’s musical gems will be uncovered and released at last, if they are half as good as this particular score we will all be in seventh heaven. More Marchetti Please…


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