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 Posted:   Dec 29, 2010 - 8:34 PM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

REVOLVER
Blood in the Streets
Great Italian Morricone scores #3

This series is inspired by a controversy thread where someone posited the idea that besides THE MISSION and some Sergio Leone westerns Ennio Morricone hasn't written anything great. Rather than making my usual comment that most of Morricone's great scores are from Italy and trying to get Americans to listen to them is like getting them to see movies with subtitles, I decided to take another tact. Since I am at an age where I will only be able to make my case a finite number of times I decided to turn this into a series presenting each great score one at a time, sort of like recordman.

If I got flac from my first two choices I probably am going to get more for this. But my first rationale is to get the attention of those young guys who like aggressive scores but wouldn't think of turning to Morricone for one. Second is Morricone did a number of B and A gangster and crime films in his career that should be represented. Third this one has a special place for me. It's centerpiece is a version of the main theme that slowly builds and lasts 12 and a half minutes! This is not for everyone (In fact I believe I successfully tormented my good friend Preston Neal Jones with it). But I was fascinated by how with each refrain master orchestrator Morricone would change the instrumentation to both maintain interest and build the intensity. What can I say except that it impressed me so much that I cut no less than 3 sttudent films in college to it. My mind actually envisoned some sort of heist that it accompanied. This was not the case.
This score was at a time when Morricone was doing 20+ film scores a year. A fellow who became a major Hollywood agent actually told me Ennio had a stable of composers working for him at this time. I said "are you sure about this?" He said "you don't think any composer could write that many scores by himself? Henry, how could you be so naive?" It wouldn't be the first or last time gossip and rumor were presented as gospel in Hollywood. Well, one way he did it was he has always been a workaholic. A characterture of the 4 composers that created GM records shows Morricone asleep with a trumpet in his hand. He was known to compose all night and sleep all day at the recording studio waking only for the playing of a cue.
Another way he did it was having his compadre Bruno Nicolai, who was equally hard working, take care of all the other footwork like copying, conducting and co-ordinating. The juxtaposition of Morricone sleeping and Nicolai running around harried led to another rumor that Nicolai did much of the composing and orchestrating. Practically impossible. Next to Bernard Herrmann there hasn't been anyone so adamant that "a composer must do their own orchestrations to be a composer" than Morricone.
And the third way he did all those scores is represented with REVOLVER. There are very few real cues in these scores that have "hits" that correspond to something onscreen. That 12 minute piece was simply presented for the filmmakers to cut and paste whereever they liked. Considering how some major scores like Goldsmith's ALIEN were treated this may be far from a dumb or lazy way to approach a film. Certainly Mancini did similar things.
So considering you might even call this a sloughed off score, look what you get. A driving main theme (I have known two composers who love that 12 minute piece. I wonder if they consider it an exercise, work-out or tour-de-force?) A wonderful love theme complete with 2 vocal versions entitled "Un Amico" on the GDM club CD. Quentin Tarantino was so impressed with it he made it one of his key themes in INGLOURIOUS BASTERDS. Even the source cues have their own special magic. One is a take-off of Vivaldi. Another is rock. Since Morricone always felt rock and jazz had more to do with the playing than the compositions he got an expert electronic guitarist, organist and trumpeter to do their thing. But because Morricone is primarily a composer I literally can hear his style on the pieces they are riffing off. This is why I feel when someone like Morricone, Goldsmith or Williams do source cues they do them more interestingly than other composers. I think they are incapable of making something bland or generic. And the there is the theme for Anna which is pensive and delicate. Again all this on a score for a B-film with a story director Sergio Sollima called rather ugly.

There are no scenes from this on youtube which is just as well but here is that 12 minute centerpiece I previously talked about:





The story revolves around a kidnapping of the wife of an Italian official (Oliver Reed) who in turn kidnaps a prisoner ( Fabio Testi) who is released in exchange for his wife.
This is Ennio's fifth film of six in a row with Sergio Sollima, depending on whether you believe Sollima about the middle one which has Bruno Nicolai's name on it.
A primo example of an aggressive crime score catching Morricone in top form.




#1 http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=74811&forumID=1&archive=0
#2 http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=74838&forumID=1&archive=0
#4 http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=74899&forumID=1&archive=0
#5 http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=74951&forumID=1&archive=0
#6 http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=74968&forumID=1&archive=0
#7 http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=75041&forumID=1&archive=0
#8 http://filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=75065&forumID=1&archive=0
#9 http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=75088&forumID=1&archive=0
#10 http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=75103&forumID=1&archive=0
#11 http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=75147&forumID=1&archive=0
#12 http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=75194&forumID=1&archive=0
#13 http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=75252&forumID=1&archive=0
#14 http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/board/posts.cfm?threadID=75297&forumID=1&archive=0

 
 Posted:   Dec 29, 2010 - 8:54 PM   
 By:   Saul Pincus   (Member)

Thanks for posting this, Morricone.

Despite the desire to explore the the Maestro Morricone's non-American work, I've found navigating his repertoire challenging as I don't know 99 percent of the films his scores are attached to! Do you know of a resource (other than Soundtrack Collector) where I could find a true fan's buyer's guide?

 
 Posted:   Dec 29, 2010 - 8:55 PM   
 By:   Advise & Consent   (Member)


Morricone... whatever you do, please continue to write these very informative and entertainting posts.

An important point needs to made about The Maestros music, namely that he seldom scored to picture. This may seem incongruous to some these days, but need I remind one and all that Mr. Hans Zimmer himself more or less embraced this way of doing things from here on in (Inception).

There are probably no right or wrong way to score pictures... Only the inspirations, intuitions and talents of the composers themselves can lead the way.

Thanks again Morricone. Your posts are a shinning example to follow.

Cheers!

 
 Posted:   Dec 29, 2010 - 8:59 PM   
 By:   Michael_McMahan   (Member)

Yeah, this is a great one. Real bassy and powerful. That quasi-Vivaldi track kicks butt. I was actually introduced to it via its reuse in La Disubbidienza (1981).

Un Amico (synth version) is another favorite of mine. Wonderful melody, and I find this particular arrangement irresistable.

I'm enjoying your little series, Henry! Way to take initiative.

 
 Posted:   Dec 29, 2010 - 9:21 PM   
 By:   piano632   (Member)

Yes, we must not forget the Morricone-pretending-he's-Vivaldi track:

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 29, 2010 - 9:59 PM   
 By:   OnyaBirri   (Member)

Morricone (the poster), you and I run with different crowds. The people I know LOVE Morricone's Euro stuff up to, say, the mid-70s, and don't give a rat's posterior for stuff like "The Mission."

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 29, 2010 - 10:18 PM   
 By:   joan hue   (Member)

This is good stuff, Henry. I'm learning. I've heard Revolver's main theme on Morricone compilations, but the first time I ever heard Un Amico was in Inglorious Basterds, and I loved that theme. Just learned now from you that it is from Revolver and has lyrics.

 
 Posted:   Dec 29, 2010 - 10:18 PM   
 By:   Michael_McMahan   (Member)

Morricone (the poster), you and I run with different crowds. The people I know LOVE Morricone's Euro stuff up to, say, the mid-70s, and don't give a rat's posterior for stuff like "The Mission."

And then there those among us who adore works from all of his periods...

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 30, 2010 - 12:56 AM   
 By:   Tall Guy   (Member)

And then there those among us who adore works from all of his periods...

Such as I...

Henry, I lost a bet with myself when you picked this score - but I'm glad you did. It's been a favourite of mine ever since hearing Un Amico on the double LP I Film Della Violenza, and I eventually found the LP from the score itself - and went big time for it.

That 12 minute track never gets stale, developing throughout like the "Invasion March" interlude from Shostakovich's 7th symphony: hypnotic, urgent, compelling, propulsive and exciting. More than a touch of Beethoven in Anna's Theme and then back 100 years to Vivaldi - one of Morricone's marvellous "barock" pieces (baroque + rock = barock, see what I did there? smile ).

A worthy choice for the third entry in Henry's masterful series!

 
 Posted:   Dec 30, 2010 - 3:35 AM   
 By:   wayoutwest   (Member)

Now your talking...Let's Roll

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 30, 2010 - 8:02 AM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

And then there those among us who adore works from all of his periods...

Such as I...

Henry, I lost a bet with myself when you picked this score - but I'm glad you did. It's been a favourite of mine ever since hearing Un Amico on the double LP I Film Della Violenza, and I eventually found the LP from the score itself - and went big time for it.

That 12 minute track never gets stale, developing throughout like the "Invasion March" interlude from Shostakovich's 7th symphony: hypnotic, urgent, compelling, propulsive and exciting. More than a touch of Beethoven in Anna's Theme and then back 100 years to Vivaldi - one of Morricone's marvellous "barock" pieces (baroque + rock = barock, see what I did there? smile ).

A worthy choice for the third entry in Henry's masterful series!


Thanks, Tallguy barock sounds very cool.

As usual my nexy choice will go in an entirely different direction.

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 30, 2010 - 8:14 AM   
 By:   cushinglee   (Member)

Morricone is providing a great service in providing context for scores to movies many have never seen and are not very accessible (in the U.S. anyway). I often troll YouTube for clips from Ennio Morricone's Italian films just to get a sense of them and how the music was incorporated.

I'm stunned, however, than the composer's worth need be justified to anyone with functioning ears.

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 30, 2010 - 1:14 PM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

Morricone is providing a great service in providing context for scores to movies many have never seen and are not very accessible (in the U.S. anyway). I often troll YouTube for clips from Ennio Morricone's Italian films just to get a sense of them and how the music was incorporated.

I'm stunned, however, than the composer's worth need be justified to anyone with functioning ears.


After mundo years at this I've found foreign soundtracks don't exist here.
More people know and collect Tyler Bates than want to get into those scores with the funny names. Only American Morricone is known here. So Morricone is the composer of DISCLOSURE, BUGSY, IN THE LINE OF FIRE, MISSION TO MARS, THE THING, RED SONJA and CITY OF JOY before anything I am listing here. And there is the problem
This, I hope, will help that situation.

 
 Posted:   Dec 30, 2010 - 1:31 PM   
 By:   wayoutwest   (Member)

Feel I'm only young in listening years as there is so many great works by Morricone and many others that I have only discovered in the last few years.Often wonder how I will feel about them in decades to come,after listening to hundreds of scores there is ones that I have come across that have a rare quality about them and this is one that has a real enduring feel about it.

Many of the tracks on this are perfect for enhancing everyday life Music for Living, transcending the big screen and colouring everyday life.

This is the one to get the expanded 21 track version which I think is a much better listening experience than the older 11 track one. wink

 
 Posted:   Dec 30, 2010 - 2:08 PM   
 By:   Zambra Alex   (Member)

Great post Morricone.
This score has IMHO the most heartfelt song in the Morricone songbook, the French lyrics are sublime.
Awesome score and album .
Thanks for reminding us.
Alex

 
 Posted:   Dec 30, 2010 - 2:09 PM   
 By:   Zambra Alex   (Member)

Great post Morricone.
This score has IMHO the most heartfelt song in the Morricone songbook, the French lyrics are sublime.
Awesome score and album .
Thanks for reminding us.
Alex

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 30, 2010 - 9:40 PM   
 By:   Morricone   (Member)

Thanks for posting this, Morricone.

Despite the desire to explore the the Maestro Morricone's non-American work, I've found navigating his repertoire challenging as I don't know 99 percent of the films his scores are attached to! Do you know of a resource (other than Soundtrack Collector) where I could find a true fan's buyer's guide?


Unfortunately no. There is Chi Mai a website that gives a certain amount of useful info:

http://www.chimai.com/

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 30, 2010 - 9:50 PM   
 By:   betenoir   (Member)

When I saw the title, I always assumed it referred to a gun used in the film. However, the guns used in the clips here are not revolvers but semi-automatic pistols. Revolver must have an entirely different meaning here, perhaps plot twists or something?

 
 
 Posted:   Dec 30, 2010 - 10:05 PM   
 By:   Doug Payne   (Member)

Great post, Morricone. The 12-minute Revolver theme is a classic and one that I had hoped to include on a Morricone Crime sampler that never happened. Fortunately, it has shown up elsewhere.

Surely, this is one of the Maestro's best, and one can hear its infleuence on many later Morricone crime scores (Peur sur la ville, Night Train Murders, The Untouchables, etc.) and in many other composers' crime scores too.

I'm surprised no one has mentioned Morricone's equally beguiling and lengthy (11 and a half minutes!) main theme to the 1972 Kirk Douglas/Florinda Bolkan heist film (a personal favorite), Un uomo da Rispettare/A Man To Respect/The Master Touch - another brilliant, beguiling Morricone theme, a little jazzier than usual (love that trumpet!).

The theme and the soundtrack are hard to come by (I have it courtesy of a Japanese CD that has long been out of print), but it is an awesome musical experience - well delivered in any of the cheap and/or gray-market DVD versions of the movie - and certainly not your average Ennio Morricone theme or score.

 
 Posted:   Dec 30, 2010 - 10:29 PM   
 By:   Saul Pincus   (Member)

Thanks for posting this, Morricone.

Despite the desire to explore the the Maestro Morricone's non-American work, I've found navigating his repertoire challenging as I don't know 99 percent of the films his scores are attached to! Do you know of a resource (other than Soundtrack Collector) where I could find a true fan's buyer's guide?


Unfortunately no. There is Chi Mai a website that gives a certain amount of useful info:

http://www.chimai.com/


Much obliged.

 
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