Monthly Archives: August 2001

Well, this isn’t music-related, but I can’t resist spreading the word about it. If you’re an AIM user, try IMing ‘SmarterChild’. It is kind of amazing. This could be very old, but it’s new to me… Some of the things it does are really incredible. Others are just plain funny -:

delicado54: do you ever sleep?

SmarterChild: Nope. I don’t need to.

delicado54: I just linked you on my weblog

SmarterChild: You just linked you on your weblog? Really?

delicado54: yes

SmarterChild: Huh… Well, waddaya know ’bout that.

delicado54: well, you should be happy

SmarterChild: Well you should be happy, you say?

delicado54: yes

SmarterChild: Yeah.

delicado54: good

SmarterChild: 😉


delicado54: do you like music?

SmarterChild: Music? I think it might be a little overrated myself.

delicado54: do you like Astrud Gilberto?

SmarterChild: Eh. I’m not sure.

delicado54: How about Serge Gainsbourg?

SmarterChild: That’s a tough question. I’m not quite sure how about serge gainsbourg.

delicado54: Ennio Morricone?

SmarterChild: Come again?

delicado54: ok, how about Lalo Schifrin?

SmarterChild: That’s a tough question. I’m not quite sure how about lalo schifrin.

delicado54: ok, forget it.

SmarterChild: Fine.

delicado54: good

SmarterChild: Right?

delicado54: yes

SmarterChild: Yes!

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mmm… the gig went off quite well, saxophone fiasco aside. I am relieved and rather exhausted. We had a good turnout, and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves. The only complaints were ‘where’s the singer’ (we don’t have one) and ‘play more’ (we decided to keep the set very lean, and it totalled around 25-30 minutes). All the same, everything went pretty well, and I’m looking forward to our forthcoming shows.
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This article by Nick Hornby struck a few chords with me. He writes as an obsessive music fan who knows nothing about the ‘top ten’ – the albums which ordinary people are actually buying. So, he listens to each them and reports back. He makes one particularly telling comment when he is praising the Alicia Keys album: “One of the strengths of the album is Keys’s recognition that there was black American music before Whitney Houston”. I haven’t heard the album, but I know what he means – modern ‘Soul’/’R&B;’s lack of resemblance to classic 60s and 70s soul is one of the main reasons why I dislike it.

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Hey, the twangy, spooky CD I did for my band-mate Kris was voted as ‘Mix of the week’ at Art of the Mix. One of my recent improvements here is that you can now comment on any record review. Just go into ‘Full Details’ and click ‘comment’…

Compilation - Ennio Morricone: 'Assoluto Morricone' (LP; Cinevox; 1969-1981)
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I could be wrong, but this compilation seems to be intended as a companion volume to the superb 'Mondo Morricone' compilations. I say this because there are few track duplications between this and 'Mondo', and also because the packaging seems to be trying to cash in on some of the goodwill of 'Mondo' by using a similar design motif with images of vintage chairs.

Alas, that is pretty much where the similarity ends - the wonderful continuity of the 'Mondo' discs is missing here, and some tracks really sound jarring to my ears.

It opens strongly with the catchy, repetive and simple 'Mare assolutamente' from 1969's 'L'assoluto Naturale'. It's a cool piece with prominent piano, rather like the great 'Ritratto d'autore' from 'Mondo Morricone'. This is followed rather inappropriately by 'Indagine su un cittadino al di sopra di ogni sospetto' from the film of 1970. This is a slow, bizarre theme with electronic 'boing' effects. I'm sure it worked well in the movie, but it's not a piece which bears repeated listens. Next up is the quite brilliant 'La Cosa Buffa' - a beautiful 1972 number with rich strings, electric harpsichord and wordless vocals. I already had this on 'Erotica Italia', but it's great to hear it again.

The compilers seem to like sudden changes of mood, because the next track is the jarring 'L'ultimo treno della notte', with its disonant and piercing train sounds. Ouch! The familiar swaying sound of "metti una sera a cena' comes as a great relief after this, and I almost forget that this is the third or fourth CD compilation I have with this track on it. Next up is 'E lei se ne more' from 1972's 'Anche se volessi lavorare che faccio?' , which is really the only track on here I hadn't heard before that I really like. It starts with just piano, electric harpsichord, strings and woodwinds, and builds up beautifully with bass and percussion. The chord sequence is subtle and rather beautiful, and some chanting/religious sounding vocals come in during the second half of the song. A great track; I just wish they were all like that!

Unfortunately, the cycle of 'Beautiful track/Jarring track' continues with 'Il gatto' from 1979. This really isn't a bad track, but it's not what I want to hear right now - the relentless rhythm makes me feel as if I'm chased around the streets. 'L'estasi del miracolo' is quite a pleasant slow orchestral piece, but somehow you can tell this is from 1980, and the overall style and mood are no longer to my taste (I know - I'm fickle with my late 60s/early 70s fixation).

'Un Sacco Bello' is a highly unusual and quite interesting number, with standard Morricone instrumentation made slightly more jaunty, and with the melody whistled throughout. It reminds me strangely of the pop group The Divine Comedy's album 'Casanova'. 'Una tenera Moglie', from 1979's 'Il gio cattollo' opens promisingly, but ends up sounding like a generic piece of film music, albeit with some familiar Morricone touches and instrumentation. 'Marcetta popolare', from 1981 is a pretty ridiculous-sounding folky number which evokes Robin Hood set in the future, featuring synthesized trombones and electric piano. It's mercifully short though.

The compilation is rescued at this point by the classic theme 'Piume di cristalo' from 1969 - really spooky, childlike wordless vocals over sparse instrumentation and what sounds like dozens of shimmering silver triangles. A spooky wordless vocal choir then comes in and sings a beautifully scored piece. It's really quite unique, and showcases Morricone's genius rather well. Another familiar Morricone piece follows: 'Gui la testa', from the 1971 Sergio Leone film. This is to me one of Morricone's most endearing western themes, managing to be delicate and beautiful in spite of its rather crude 'Shong Shong' percussive vocals.

'La Moglie pui' bella' sees Morricone still in 'boing boing' sound effects mode, and this slightly jarring dramatic piece isn't very enjoyable for me at all. The warmer 'Cosi come sei', from 1978 gets going quite nicely, although its late date comes across in some of the brass playing late on in the track.

And while there's nothing wrong with either of them, neither 'La donna della domenica' or 'accadde a venezia' are very exciting - they're just reasonably generic-sounding, quiet pieces. At first I thought the same of 'come un madrigale' from 1971, but in fact it's a rather charming piece, very delicate and pretty.

Overall, there is a lot of genius on this compilation, but I don't like the way it was put together one bit. I wish that the people who put it together had learnt more from 'Mondo Morricone' and 'More Mondo Morricone'.

Compilation - Kalanji Anandji: 'Laawaris/Muqaddar Ka Sikandar' (CD; EMI India; 1978-1979)
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This sounds quite cool, although I think it will take me a while to get into it. One cut, the funky 'Pyar Zindagi Hai' features on a few Bollywood compilations. This the only 'westernized' cut, as far as I can tell. The sound doesn't seem so great, and it's hard to tell which songs are from which soundtrack. Anyway, I'll report back in more detail when I've given this a proper listen.

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Mmm. I just had two Mujjadara sandwiches from Kalustyans, a specialty store where you can buy middle-eastern sandwiches. Why two? Because I don’t go there too often. Was I able to finish two? No. Do I now feel sick? Yes.

The band is hotting up. Two or three more rehearsals before the show. I’m pretty excited about it.

Compilation: 'Le Coeur Qui Jazze' (CD; Partners in Crime; 1966-1974)
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'The most controversial and wanted cult-grooves', is apparently what's on this CD. Whatever that means. This is the only thing I have from the Italian 'partners in crime' compilation series, and I quite like it, but I think its tagline is a little strange. Why are the 'grooves' controversial? Having listened, I assume this is because some of them veer close (and over) the line of kitsch. The most prominent example of this is 'Here we are falling in Love', a Neil Sedaka song, sung by the Swedish duo of Meta Roos & Nippe Sylvens Band. In spite of its groovy Hammond organ introduction, and some cool Three Suns-esque effects, the vocals make this track a little too much for me (incidentally, the album it's taken from is a $200 album on ebay).

The compilation seems to have four distinct phases, one for each side of the record, making for a nice, varied compilation. The first is 'jazzy european pop'. It opens with a track which is now very familiar to me, 'le coeur qui jazze' by France Gall. It's a cool, jazzy outing with scat vocals, rather like 'Pense a moi'. Next up is a swinging Michel Legrand track, which I think is taken from 'les damoiselles de Rochefort'. Then Astrud Gilberto's familiar 'Aruanda' comes on, and you think 'why did they put this on there', until you hear that it sounds slightly different - it's in Italian...

The next phase has a Brazilian flavor, with contributions by two jazz musicians - Milt Jackson doing 'Autumn Leaves' and Jon Hendricks's superb 'Jive Samba'. The next three are by Brazilian musicians. Claudia's 'Panema Leblon' is a superb jazzy pop number (as is the LP it's taken from, 'voce'). Roberto Menescal's 'Five Four' is a cool jazz instrumental (guess the time signature). Leny Andrade takes on 'Samba em Paris', a very jazzy pop number which apparently was written by Nelsinho, but which sounds a lot like a Michel Legrand number.

It's at this point that the compilation starts to lose its way for me. 'Sombre Guitar' by Dancer's Inferno is a slightly cheesy soul-disco number. Charly Antolini's 'Uela Uela' is a repetitive but kind of incredible beat number with an enormous break beat. Big Jim Sullivan's sitar take on 'sunshine superman' is quite pleasant, but it seems strangely placed. Randy Weston's tense but understated 'In memory of' isn't a bad track (a lot of fender rhodes, horns, brooding and jazzy), but again, it seems slightly out of place here.

The final phase opens with the sleek organ/handclap groove of 'The mad doctors' by 'the mad mad doctors' (where this comes from, I have no idea). Next up is 'Laderia De Preguica' by Elis Regina, which actually does not seem to feature her vocals at all (what's up with that?). There are laid back jazzy grooves on Walter Kubiczec's 'Exotica', with wordless vocals, bongoes, flute and piano. It sounds like a typical library music piece to me -quite pleasant, but not amazing. The final two tracks are by The Silhouettes, and they sound like strange hybrid - on the one hand, cheesy female wordless vocals like the UK act Birds and Brass, but on the hand, a more tight, spare and jazzy backing.

Overall, the compilation has some strong moments, but somehow fails to completely hit the mark with me. I figure it was probably aimed at more of a Dance music/DJ crowd - people looking for something different to spin. Anyway, it's an interesting item, definitely worth picking up if you see it used...

Lee Hazlewood: 'The N.S.V.I.P.s' (LP; Reprise; 1968)
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This is one of Lee's 'talking' albums - each track is introduced by a cool 1-2 minute segment with Lee telling a story over some strummed chords, rather like he does on 'Trouble is a Lonesome Town'. The stories are without exception very funny and entertaining, and this ends up being a very engaging album. All the songs are sparsely instrumented guitar (often it sounds like a 12 string), a light bass and vocals. None of the brilliant lushly orchestrated and sonically startling stuff which I love him for. Yet this is still just as addictive. I don't know what Lee has exactly, but I want some of it...

'First Street Blues' is about Leroy, a friendly dragon who gave up eating people because he found something he liked more - wine. The songs don't always correspond to the spoken intros - 'I had a friend' is introduced with a funny story about Tarzan and Jane, but the song is a jaunty but rather chilling number about the mob killing someone for his beliefs - 'he read some books we didn't appreciate, so we shot Bill this morning. You missed the crowd, all filled with hate/we burned his house last night at 8/ain't you sorry that you're late/we shot Bill this morning.'

One of the most memorable tracks is 'Go die big city', which is about Tinker Mason, who hates cities ('you just name any city, and Tinker'd hate it for you. If he even got around somebody that even about liked a city, he'd throw a rock at them'). To try and heal Tinker, they send him to Barton Freud ('he wasn't a psychiatrist, but he was a chiropractor who did some heavy thinking'). The lyrics have a beautiful twist, which I won't spoil for you here.

Pretty much every track is memorable - from 'I ain't gonna be', (about Rodney Farms - 'he just left, and she ain't seen him since'), to 'I might break even' (which chronicles the mishaps which befall one unlucky chap who wanted to be a millionaire before he was 40).

Strangely, this was not one of the CDs in the reissue series on 'smells like records'. But if you're a fan of Lee as a personality, and enjoy 'trouble is a lonesome town', it's well worth seeking out.

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I’ve been working on some subtle improvements to both this records diary and to Musical Taste. Check it out and see if you can spot them…

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Someone stole Princess Diana’s records
Apparently her butler helped himself to a lot of her stuff, including, “several CDs and vinyl records…including ones by Abba, Tina Turner, Chris de Burgh, Michael Jackson, Supertramp and Leo Sayer.”

Wow, he got some great stuff there, eh…

Actually, I’m not one to talk. I recently made two speculative soundtrack purchases, and if today’s is as bad as yesterday’s then I will be pretty upset. Yesterday’s was a 1969 soundtrack by Mike Curb, ‘The Big Bounce’. It was up on ebay, sealed, and I thought this guy’s soundtrack to ‘Teenage Rebellion’ a couple of years before was great. This really sucks though. Just very uninteresting pop orchestral film music on one side, and cheesy, peppy, bad pop vocals on the other side. Today’s purchase was also a risk, but the record was cheaper, so I’m not so worried: ‘Lovers and Other Strangers’ from 1970, scored by Fred Karlin. Fred is most famous in my head for the famously good ‘Up the down staircase’ soundtrack, which in fact I’ve never actually heard. Anyway, I couldn’t resist buying this sealed for $2, but my expectations aren’t that high, as several of the songs are cheesy looking vocals, and I’m still having nightmares about the ones on ‘the big bounce’…

PS. I think Margo Guryan‘s ‘Take a Picture’ is my favorite album EVER.

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I’m still enjoying that compilation I made. I actually posted it to AOTM, so you can check out the track listing there if you like.

I also rented a tenor saxophone, so that all the lucky people can hear how well I play after my 9 year hiatus at the Stretcher Case live show.

Today’s CDs came from Academy.

Jack Nitzsche: 'The Lonely Surfer' (CD; Collectors Choice Music; 1963)
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I don't know what I expected from this album exactly, but somehow it doesn't quite fit the bill. Jack Nitzsche has a reputation for being involved with pretty cool things (e.g. Phil Spector, good Rolling Stones albums), so I've been interested in hearing this album for a while. I guess he also has a cool name, and the word 'surfer' is one of those 'cool record alert' words for me (like 'gogo', 'NOW', 'discotheque' etc), so I didn't hesitate to pick this up when I saw it today. And I do quite like it, however, it's not as I'd hoped - a twangy, reverb-drenched yet breezy instrumental pop album with a light orchestral backing. It's rather more bombastic than that, some how, with an interesting use of percussion (I hear loud timpanis in some songs).

The album was recorded in 1963 after its title track 'the lonely surfer' was a minor hit. Sure, all the tracks have a low-register twangy guitar, but most of the time, these are joined by some very treble-heavy, overbearing strings. On the title track, this produces quite a cool early-60s pop feel. And several other tracks are also fun - the low, deadpan guitar on 'ebb tide', and old favorite song of mine, is very cool. The 'magnificent seven' cover is quite competent, but Jack Nitsche's ensemble doesn't really add flair to the song like Al Caiola does in his version.

There is even a cover of the song 'Baja' by my hero Lee Hazlewood (I guess this was written for Duane Eddy), which builds up quite nicely (oddly enough, Laika and the Cosmonauts cover this same track on their 'Zero Gravity' album, which I've been listening to a lot recently). 'Theme for a broken heart', which I wanted to be a David Lynch soundtrack-esque 50s style twangy pop ballad, is strangely lacklustre and uninteresting to me.

'Beyond the Surf' is one of the cooler tracks, but while the slow, low picked notes on the guitar are cool, I'm longing for some high-twangy solos, but instead I get swirling strings. I'm a guy who *loves* swirling strings, but on this record, i just want them to go home. I have an old album at home by Eric Judd called 'Rocking Violins which has a similar, slightly backward-looking approach to mixing rock music with strings.

Overall, I much prefer Santo & Johnny's sea-themed album of around the same time, 'Offshore' to this record. It's tamer, but the use of strings (arranged by Mort Garson) is much more to my taste. 'The lonely surfer; is interesting to have, but I won't be putting it on every day.

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I spent the whole of Saturday listening to records and CDs. My apartment looks like a bomb hit it. Still, I ended up making quite a nice twangy/swampy/murky/bluesey/theme music type of compilation, one which I did mainly for my friend Kris. I ended up rediscovering a few tracks I had been really big on about five years ago, which was nice. I even recommended a few. My Jack McDuff records (recently received from ebay) turned out to be really pretty cool, although much more straight ahead jazz-pop than lots of the stuff I listen to. One was on Blue Note, the other was on Cadet. Somehow I’d kind of forgotten the Blue Note label existed recently, so obsessed have I been with Cadet. It’s ‘Down Home Style’, and it’s a very accessible and pleasant record. I don’t know what it is though – there’s a bit too much saxophone or something. Something about it stops me from finding it really super cool and makes me call it ‘pleasant’ instead. Ah well…

Bappi Lahiri/R.D.Burman: 'College Girl/Shalimar' (CD; Polygram India; 1977-1978)
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'College Girl' was scored by Bappi Lahiri, and it opens with moody vocal 'Pyar Manag Hai Tumhi se'. It has some cool vibes and guitar in it, but to be honest, at five minutes, it goes on a bit for me. 'College Girl I love you' is entertaining, opening with some weird electronic noises and kicking in with a fierce tabla beat. The vocals are chaotic and echoey. 'Every Body Dance with me' is a pretty groovy vocal 'You you you come with me...', with a female vocal replying 'I love you/ hold me tight/ oh my darling/ you are so sweet'. The sound quality is not so great though, and the vocals are so echoey that it's hard to hear. 'Please dear Please' is another interesting one - a frantic tabla/wah wah guitar opening is followed by a chaotic vocal with a lot of percussion. Again, for my rather conventional tastes, the track really lasts too long, and the instrumental packages are not long enough. I don't know much about this kind of music though (you guessed that, right?)

'Shalimar' is a much more accessible, westernized soundtrack. It's also helped by the fact that on this CD at least, the sound quality is far better. The 'Title Music' is a very cool, jazzy and funky track, which sounds like it was influenced by the work of Lalo Schifrin. This is followed by the infectiously brilliant (or annoying, depending on what day it is) 'One Two cha cha cha' by Usha Uthup & Chorus. Made famous by its inclusion on the 'Further Inflight Entertainment' compilation a few years ago, this is a super-catchy electro-cha-cha with indian instrumentation - (e.g. sitar, rasping horns). The vocal is rather charming, mostly in English, with some cool wordless scat moments (at one point reprising the disco classic 'That's the way I like it'). The whole soundtrack is really pretty nice, but I'll talk about the other more accessible fusion tracks, since I find it easier to talk about them. 'Baby, Let's dance together' is a really charming and rather funky vocal with some nice flute and a futuristic sounding electric guitar effect. 'Romantic Theme' is a haunting moody piece with guitar, strings and brass (and probably lots of other instruments I don't know the name of as well). The famous and ubiquitous Asha Bosle sings 'Mera Pyar Shalimar', which is a delicate and beautiful theme.

This CD is definitely worth having, and it's interesting to note that CDs seem to be relatively cheap in India - the cover has a maximum price of Rs. 360 (around $7) printed on it, and I was able to pick this up for not much more than $10 in the US.

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Had a good evening at In Hi-fi last night. This guy Joe McGinty of the Loser’s Lounge (a cool regular music tribute event held at Fez here in NYC) was DJing, and he played some really cool stuff. Anita’s set was also great; unfortunately I missed Scott’s set, and was so tired I had to leave before Jack went on. Anyway, I got a huge number of records in the mail today, I’m happy to announce. And they sound great!

Compilation: 'The Mad, Mad World of Soundtracks, Volume 2' (CD; Universal Jazz; 1968-1977)
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I loved the first volume of this series so much that I felt obliged to splash out $20 on the second. I'm very glad that I did; it really is quite excellent - a super cool and varied compilation of soundtrack music. As on the first series, the compilers mix actual soundtrack singles and recordings with other interesting interpretations of songs from films. And since they have several musical passions in common with me (e.g. Astrud Gilberto, Claudine Longet, Scott Walker, Lalo Schifrin, Henry Mancini), I find this mix pretty intoxicating.

There are many standout tracks on this 20 track compilation. Oddly enough, it picks up three tracks which I have singled out myself over the years from my vinyl copies: Scott Walker's 'That Night' (from 'the moviegoer'), Kai Winding's 'Harper' (from 'more brass', with arrangement from Claus Ogerman) and the vocal version of 'The odd couple' by Neal Hefti. I had forgotten about the latter, having (for some reason which escapes me) sold my vinyl copy several years ago. I'm delighted to have this again, just because the lush arrangment in the introduction is completely breathtaking. The vocals don't come in until half way through the song, and if you haven't heard it before, they're pretty entertaining, particularly if you are as familiar with this excellent instrumental theme as I am - think of the tune, but sung with these lyrics: 'no matter where they go, they are known as the couple./they're never seen alone, so they're known as the couple../as I've indicated...they are never quite separated...they are peas in the pod/don't you think that it's odd...'

There are also a couple of real treats for me - tracks by Claudine Longet and Astrud Gilberto which I had not heard before. Claudine sings 'Nothing to Lose' from the Peter Sellers film 'The Party', a lovely recording which I had lived without for too long. Now I just wish the A-side of the 45 it was taken from, the sublime 'White Horses', would see the light of day on CD. Either that, or that someone would sell me the 45... Astrud sings 'A time for us' from 'Romeo and Juliet', a lost track from a 45 which I didn't even know existed. This sounds like it's from the same period as 'I haven't got anything better to do' and has the same production/arrangment team of Alberto Gorgoni and Brooks Arthur, who turn up a slow, lush arrangement. I love it because I love Astrud, but I guess it isn't completely world-shaking. Great to hear it though.

There are several other amazing tracks which I had never heard or even heard of before. Ella Fitzgerald sings the groovy 'a place for lovers', which has a nice arrangement reminiscent of the one used by Quincy Jones for Sarah Vaughan's great version of 'the pawnbroker' theme. Sam Spence's 'Wie ein blitz' is a groovy piece with tune picked out on a low, twangy guitar, a fast, funky beat and some moody strings. It has a great instrumental break with a big brass section and then continues with a classic late 60s easy sound. Pat Williams's 'Streets of San Francisco' confused me at first - I thought Pat Williams was a woman, who recorded an album with Lalo Schifrin. But no, this is Patrick Williams, and it's a prime cut of Schifrin-esque funky thriller music with electric piano and a lot of horns.

The compilation continues to blow me away more and more with Ingfried Hoffman's - 'Robbi, Tobbi & Das Fliewatuut', a simple, bluesey, funky number, which contrasts a gentle strings and brass, Bacharach-style backing with a very sharp sounding melody played I guess on the synthesizer. Later we get some whistling as well. Super groovy... I was surprised when I saw a Bachelors song in the track listing, just because the Bachelors are one of those bands with records all over British charity shops. I've always ignored them, like pretty much everyone else. This version of 'diamonds are forever' really isn't bad though. It even gets going with a nice little beat in the middle. It's from 1971; it's a John Barry song - I guess it would have been hard to go wrong.

Klaus Doldinger's 'Tatort' is a nice action theme, which goes all funky in the middle with a distorted organ sound and a cool beat. The inclusion of 'Die Kette' by Jochen Brauer Group & Tender Aggression ensures that no one could accuse this compilation of being same-y - it's a german language vocal proto disco/funk track. Pretty cool, although I wouldn't want to hear it every day...

So, a very cool compilation. There are a couple more contributions by famous American jazz musicians - Jimmy Smith does a very interesting version of an obscure Henry Mancini piece, 'the night visitor'. Chet Baker sings 'Come Saturday Morning', and wow, this sounds nothing like any Chet Baker I've heard before. Kind of folky with a prominent acoustic guitar. Very cool. I can't wait for volume 3...

Compilation - Chakachas: 'Best of Chakachas' (LP; Wah Wah; 1970-1972)
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I just got this album in the mail, and I'm looking forward to checking it out. I bought it because I love the Nico Gomez stuff I've heard, and I believe he was involved with this band. It also leads off with the great track 'jungle fever', which was used to great effect during that tense drug scene in the movie 'Boogie Nights'.

Well, having listened to this, I have to report that it's disappointing. Other than 'Stories' and 'Jungle fever', the tracks have a different, slightly more cheesy latin feel to them, and other than a very amusing song about having a party (complete with sound effects of the doorbell ringing etc), there isn't much else to please me...

Gerardo Frisina: 'Ad Lib' (CD; Schema; 2001)
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I bought this because this dude put together some cool compilations - 'up', 'metti, una bossa a cena'. It doesn't sound like it will totally rock my world. But I think that might just be because of the incredible 'mad mad world of soundtracks vol 2' which it has to compete with today. So I'll revisit this one soon and reserve judgement until then.

Nino Nardini and Roger Roger: 'Jungle Obsession' (CD; Pulp Flavor/Dare Dare; 1970)
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This is a nice record, originally a library LP in the Chappell collection. For some reason, the reissuers used a cheesy new cover instead of the supercool original, but I guess that doesn't matter too much. The album sounds good on first listen. The tracks are quite plain and tasteful, gently exotic with some nice beats, airy strings which drift in and out and cool electric guitar. The overall effect is of a slightly less busy version of Les Baxter's great 'Que Mango' album. The compositions aren't quite as strong, but there are some great moments, especially 'Bali Girl', 'Mowgli', and 'Malaysia'. The bonus Nino Nardini-only track, 'Tropical' is also great. Some tracks actually sound like better executed versions of the kind of recordings I've been making recently. Anyway, although it wasn't cheap, I'm very glad I picked this up.

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