Author Topic: quella sporca storia nel west...review...  (Read 2418 times)

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Offline john mansell

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quella sporca storia nel west...review...
« on: May 26, 2012, 05:14:33 pm »
QUELLA SPORCA STORIA NEL WEST.
(THE DIRTIEST STORY OF THE WEST)
MUSIC COMPOSED AND CONDUCTED BY FRANCESCO DE MASI
BEAT RECORDS (ITALIA) CDCR97.
RUNNING TIME 51 MINS 18 SECS
RATING *****
REVIEW JOHN MANSELL © 2012.
 
Now here is a real gem of a spaghetti western soundtrack, it features a great title song performed by Maurizio Graf, the artistry of Alessandro Alessandroni as a choral director co-composer and guitarist, the distinct sound of il Cantori Moderni, the unmistakable talent of Franco D Gemini and of course the originality and the musical prowess of Maestro Francesco De Masi. Released in 1968 this is one of the many spaghetti westerns that were popular with audiences around the world during the 1960,s thru to the mid to late 1980,s.Francesco De Masi had a unique style and sound when working on any type of movie, but for me it was the western genre in particular where the composer excelled. His scores for westerns such as ARIZONA COLT, 7 DOLLARI SUL ROSSO, KILL THEM ALL AND COME BACK ALONE,SARTANA NON PERDONA and QUELLA SPORCA STORIA NEL WEST to name but a few all contain musical elements that are essentially akin to the Italian western sound but also have alongside them and fused within them a style that evokes the Hollywood produced western recalling scores such as, HIGH NOON, THE BRAVADOS,THE TIN STAR etc etc, De Masi not only utilized the typical  expansive Americana sound of the western as envisaged by composers such as Toimkin, Newman and Bernstein but he also stamped upon each project the inimitable sound of the Spaghetti western and further embellished this sound with a style and inventiveness that was all his own. The compact disc opens with FIND A MAN, (tema di Johnny) performed by vocalist Maurizio Graf, this performers distinct vocalising was utilized by many composers in Italy and he worked on numerous western soundtracks. Maybe I am being a little over the top here, when I say I think that this is possibly the best song written for an Italian western as it no only has great lyrics by Audrey Stanton and A.Alessandroni and an outstanding performance by Graf, but it also contains a fantastic jangling guitar riff courtesy of Alessandroni and a melodic and infectious musical backing, that consists of organ, percussion, piano and lavish sounding strings.  FIND A MAN WHO NEVER KILLED NOT EVEN FOR THE LOVE OF GOLD, FIND A MAN WHO NEVER LIED AND OFFER HIM YOUR SOUL, FIND A MAN WHO NEVER  STOLE FROM ANY MAN A WOMANS LOVE, FIND A MAN WHO NEVER LIED AND NEVER LET HIM GO. How can this not be a winning formula for a western song.
 
 
 
I think more than any other De Masi western score this one include some wonderful choral work which can be heard in cues such as IN MEMORIA (track 3) and JOHNNY SULLA CROCE (track 16), it also a score that has a number of stand out track, the composer crating secondary themes that in truth because of their strength and quality would easily act as main titles for other assignments. Track 11 for example IL VILLAGGIO DI SANTANA is a great action piece that contains driving percussion uplifting and forthright Mexican flavoured strings, strumming guitars, proud sounding horns, whips and xylophone. All of these elements combine to create something that is anthem like and stirring in its overall sound, again the composer fuses both Italian styles with that of a more conventional western sound, the end result is something that is not only original but pleasing and rewarding for the listener. The soundtrack was issued previously on a CAM LP back in 1968, then CAM re-issued the score in 1995 paired with 7 DOLLARI SUL ROSSO but there were no extra cues included and it was a re-issue of the LP tracks. This edition contains all of those tracks  1-19 on the disc, plus we are treated to a further 8 cues, which are alternate takes on a handful of the previous tracks. Sound quality is outstanding and the presentation is handled nicely with many stills from the movie and informative notes by Filippo De Masi the composers son. This is the 7th compact disc to be issued by BEAT records in the Francesco de Masi western score series and as I write this review an eighth is due to be announced. It shows us just how many great scores were penned by this Maestro of many talents and also how underrated he was outside of his native Italy.  This is a score that should be in any self respecting film music connoisseurs collection.