Sunday, March 11, 2012

(a review, (c) 2012 by DamnCrazyGringo!)

Recently stumbled upon a fine li’l CD of instrumentals by Lou Pecci, SPAGHETTI WESTERN THEMES ON NYLON STRING GUITAR; it comprises a dozen cover tracks, plus one original.

Approaching Euro-Western film music, one cannot escape Ennio Morricone’s work, and most of this album draws from his oeuvre; but Pecci also covers other composers (prominent or, sadly, overlooked): Luis Enriquez Bacalov’s “Quien Sabe” (from BULLET FOR THE GENERAL), Gian Piero Reverberi’s “You'd Better Smile” (VIVA DJANGO), and Marcello Giombini’s “Hey Amigo, It's Sabata” (SABATA). Personally, it’s nice to see so many Lee Van Cleef films represented (FOR A FEW DOLLARS MORE, SABATA, DEATH RIDES A HORSE, GOOD, THE BAD & THE UGLY) – but LVC was fairly prolific in Spaghettis, so no surprises there.

Pecci arranged the tracks chronologically, according to each film’s theatrical release date...a nice gimmick, actually: it creates a theme beyond the smooth tonal transitions from one cut to another. These touches provide hidden depths that encourage listeners to play the album start-to-finish, never mind uncommon trait, these days.

The Morricone pieces range from the Leone films (FISTFUL, FF$M, GBU, DUCK YOU SUCKER) to NAVAJO JOE, GREAT SILENCE, DRaH, and FIVE MAN ARMY. Pecci works in ONCE UPON A TIME IN THE WEST, via his own tribute composition, "Once Upon A Time".

Throughout, his playing is uniformly flawless, and the overdubbing (necessary to include full notation of the songs), as well as echo and other special effects, make for an absorbing aural experience.

If this sounds intriguing to any of you, sample tracks (an’ maybe buy it!) here: