Composer Gianni Marchetti, is probably more than any other Italian film music composer underrated, underused and also under represented on recordings of any type. I first discovered Marchetti via his scores for COWARDS DON’T PRAY and SEVEN RED BERETS which were issued as a double soundtrack album on Long playing record back in the 1960s by CAM, these two atmospheric and haunting works were a great introduction for me as at that time I was still discovering the multi faceted, alluring and ingenious world of the Euro score. The composer’s obvious ability to create lingering and effective themes and his gift and talent for orchestration was refreshing and attractive. The problem was that there was at that time little or no other scores available for me to collect. This situation has sadly not been remedied to any great extent and Marchetti’s scores have in my opinion been neglected by record labels and also because of this collectors are in most cases still unaware of this composers wealth of material. Hillside did release COWARDS DON’T PRAY around two years ago, and earlier this year they issued MUORI LENTAMENTE TE LA CODI DI PIU (DIE SLOWLY, YOU’LL ENJOY IT MORE). I was actually always under the impression that this was a western score, as I had seen the LP cover many times in ads etc. from CAM, and this had Lex Barker brandishing a rifle dressed in what I thought was a Jim Bowie type jacket. I did find out later of course it was not a western. Hillside’s release of this score contains many more cues than the original LP record; 35 in all. Marchetti’s score is a multi edged one, it contains large expansive string arrangements that would not be out of place in one of those over the top romantic Hollywood pics, these are full and richly luxurious and sweep and swell in a style that can only be labelled as grandiose. Intimate and poignant tone poems that are intricate and delicate, hard hitting jazz infused action cues and highly charged jazz compositions that fuse big band and lounge styles flawlessly.
Add to this already eclectic musical palette stunning solos on saxophone, electric guitar, piano and trumpet all supported by percussion and enhanced by lightly strummed guitar with occasional light use of vibes and subtle inclusion of organ and strategically placed harpsichord, plus the exquisite and unblemished vocal performances of Italian film music’s first lady Edda Dell Orso and the precise and faultless inclusion of the Il Cantori Moderni chorus of Alessandroni and what we have here is a classic in every sense of the word. Its one of those rare soundtrack moments when you are never tempted to reach for the fast forward button or to jump a track, the listener will just sit and do what they are meant to do Listen, from track 1 through to track 35 and then play the disc again. The central theme is the core or backbone of the work, it is infectious and appealing and the composer utilises the composition or arrangements and elements of it throughout the score each time it is a delight because the composer keeps it fresh, vibrant and effervescent on each appearance. This is a must have compact disc, its contents being, dramatic, exciting, emotional and extremely pleasing and entertaining. I only hope that more Marchetti is on its way. Highly recommended.