Ciao Luis Bacalov! (1933-2017) – Django Composer.

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Academy Award winner (1996 Best original score for Il Postino) Luis Bacalov died on November 15. The Argentinian-born Maestro had a prolific film scoring career in Italy spanning seven decades.  Also being nominated to an Oscar for the music of Pasolini’s The Gospel according to St-Matthew (1964) he was also praised for such film music as Fellini’s City of Women (1980).

But this talented pianist, also active in the Italian progressive music scene, definitely left a mark with his opening song and score to Sergio Corbucci’s Cult classic Django (1966), that same song and score Quentin Tarantino used in Django unchained (It is impressive how many people Continue reading

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John Carpenter’s Anthology Tour – Montreal – Nov. 13. Mtelus – Review

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John Carpenter, the mastermind behind horror and Sci-fi classics such as Halloween (1978), The Thing (1982) and Prince of Darkness (1987) is on tour. The Cult director/ soundtrack Composer is recognized as this famous director who’s scoring his pictures himself. So he is touring to play some music.

From 1974’s Dark Star, his feature debut, to 2001’s Ghost of Mars, Carpenter composed the music to all his theatrical movies (the 1970’s and 80’s soundtracks were produced in association with Alan Howarth) except for Starman (1984, music by Jack Nitzsche) and The Thing (1982, Music by Ennio Morricone with partial overdubs by Carpenter and Howarth).

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In the Live version, things start roundly with a pretty good rendering of the theme to Carpenter’s Sci-fi Adventure, Escape from NY (1981), one of his best. Accompanied by a quintet, with his son Cody,  also on keyboards just like dad,  the director leads the show (his gear is set at the front) with a quiet but strong presence. A little technical snag?  No problems, he’ll talk to the audience like they are old buddies. They were already captured anyway. When the first notes of the theme to Continue reading

Goblin: Live – Montreal, October 27th, 2017

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On October 27th, at Fairmount Theatre, Italian horror movie soundtrack heroes, Goblin paid a second visit to our fair city of Montreal (If we do not take into account original member Claudio Simonetti’s own tour) and they entertained, once more, an attentive  crowd.

Since the 1970s the band has changed personnel, dissolved, and reformed multiple times. This time Montreal was lucky to receive an (almost complete) original lineup, including Massimo Morante (guitar), Agostino Marangolo (drums), Maurizio Guarini (keyboards), Fabio Pignatelli (bass), and Aidan Zammit (keyboards). Core member Claudio Simonetti was still missing…

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Fitting for a Halloween weekend, the show opened with the sound of a scary scream. Accompanied by looped horror film footage on the screen behind them, the quintet kicked things off with Killer on a Train (from Dario Argento’s Non Ho Sonno, 2001). A string of newer songs, including Continue reading

Planet of the Apes OST – Jerry Goldsmith

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Mondo Records edited a 2x LP version of Jerry Goldsmith seminal score to 1968 Sci-fi classic Planet of the Apes.

The first installment of the Arthur P. Jacobs franchise, based on the source novel by Pierre Boule, was to be helm by J. Lee Thompson who stepped down because of a schedule conflict (It was also, at one point,  a Blake Edwards project). Star Charlton Heston suggested Franklin J. Schaffner should direct relying on the work they did together with the under rated The Warlord (1965). Schaffner, who only directed the first film, provided strong and efficient direction in creating an overall ambiance for a strange new world that lifted the picture to critical and box office success spanning several sequels.

To achieve the full experience, a substantial supplement was needed. Enter Jerry Goldsmith. Already a rising voice in film and TV music, Continue reading

10 Film Themes – 10 covers

 

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It is always fascinating how film scores helped shape modern music. Through the years many rock musicians paid tribute to film composers. Here’s a little sample:

 

1) Django – Italian version (L. Bacalov) performed by Joe Preston

Bassist to such cult acts of Doom metal as Sunn O)), The Melvins and Earth, Joe Preston (a decade before Quentin Tarantino)  paid hommage to Luis Bacalov opening song to Sergio Corbucci’s 1966 classic using the Italian version which wasn’t retain in the final cut of the film but made it on releases of the score. Preston (under the name The Thrones) is a one man band, his bass activating the midi equipment surrounding him.

 

2) Cape Fear (B. Herrmann) performed by Fantomas

The Supergroup Fantomas (made of members of Mr Bungle, Slayers and The Melvins) released an album of film music covers titled Director’s Cut. This is their rendition of Bernard Herrmann’s music to British 1960 cult classic Cape Fear as well as Continue reading