‘Morricone 60’ is the first album of Ennio Morricone’s greatest hits conducted, recorded and curated by Morricone himself – and aims to create a legacy for his fans to enjoy. It sees the celebrated Maestro performing some of his greatest film music from The Good, the Bad and the Ugly to his recent Academy Award-winning score for Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight (released earlier this year on Decca). The album marks Ennio Morricone’s 60th anniversary as a composer and conductor and features brand new recordings with the Czech National Symphony Orchestra, with whom he’s collaborated on major international movie scores.
This two-disc anthology assembled by Mike Patton is, after the spaghetti Western soundtracks and themes, essential Morricone. Never has his music from the strange films he scored in the 1960s and '70s been showcased in such an original and powerful way. Patton has looked closely into the experimental nature of the maestro and found plenty here to offer as well as to crow about. Many of the scores he chose from would be known only to cineastes of minor and obscure Italian films. Yet, Patton understood that Morricone loved his own process and treated crime and exploitation flicks like L'Anticristo and Forza G with the same delightful sense of adventure that he approached The Godfather and The Mission with. Here, all manner of strangeness is on offer: from psychedelic guitars and tripped-out wordless vocals to sitars, layers and layers of percussion, acid-drenched strings, an Echoplexed celeste, toy pianos, psychotic operatic voices in chorus, and more.
Ennio Morricone is one of the most inimitable composers in contemporary music- the trumpeter who broke with convention and mastered composition, the pop arranger who melded the wonders of non-instrumental sounds with airwave-ready song structure, the writer of concert hall symphonies, practitioner of the avant-garde, master of the melodic, and ultimately, the creator of some of the most innovative and memorable movie soundtracks of the 20th century. Given the sheer size and diversity of the man’s output, any Morricone fan is sure to have individual pieces that resonate more for them than others. But here they are: Ennio Morricone's 32 Greatest Musical Cues.
KeepMoving Records presents the premiere release of The Demons of St. Petersburg by the legendary Ennio Morricone. Directed by Giuliano Montaldo (Sacco e Vanzetti, Giordano Bruno, Marco Polo), the film tells the fictionalized life story of Fyodor Dostoyevsky (Miki Manojlovic) who is caught up with political intrigue and a career crisis resulting from his crippling gambling debts. While trying to finish his latest novel on schedule and reveal an anarchist plot targeting the Tsar, the troubled author must fight his inner demons to move forward in life… The Demons of St. Petersburg marks the latest collaboration between Montaldo and Morricone who had scored the majority of the director's films. The key thematic material includes the propulsive anarchist theme for the assassination plot and a darkly passionate love theme for a string quartet and harp which underscores Dostoyevsky's troubled relationship with his stenographist, Anna.
Criminally overshadowed by the moral uproar surrounding Adrian Lyne's film remake of Vladimir Nabokov's groundbreaking novel Lolita was Ennio Morricone's remarkable score, a hauntingly beautiful (and beautifully haunting) effort on par with Il Maestro's finest work. The music possesses a darkly dreamlike sensuality that perfectly communicates the erotic obsession at the material's core. Morricone's elegant melodies are daring yet subtle, shaded by melancholy strings and ethereal electronic textures. Milan's official soundtrack release is something of a misfire, however, interrupting Morricone's reverie with period pop hits like Ella Fitzgerald's "Tain't What You Do" and Louis Prima's "Civilization (Bongo, Bongo, Bongo)." Great music, without a doubt, but poorly matched to the intimacy of the instrumental score.