MAGIC MIX

soundtracks . library music . exotica . easy

WEEK STARTING 18 May

Genre pick of the week Cover of Incontro Al Club Ventuno by Modula.
Not content with packing our record bags with wonked out funk on their main label, Periodica launch Futurible, a fresh faced sibling with an even bigger library obsession. Italian producer, oscillatory sculptor and master of synthesis Modular dives into a deep niche in the landscape of soundtrack obuscurity, taking inspiration from Italy's 70s police b-movies. Reviewing the musical landscape of the "poliziotteschi" flicks - a sometimes forgotten but still infamous sound - Modula has recreated the perfect score for an imaginary movie based on the adventures of detective La Bella. The agent enters "Club Ventuno" on the A side looking for clues as the synth and sax sleaze-fest sweeps the Balearic mafia off their feet. Meanwhile on the flip he's in hot pursuit of his suspect in a frenetic chase - expect breathless sequences, freaky sirens and all manner of odd fx. 

STAFF COMMENTS

Patrick says: Modula makes some serious waves on new periodica sub-label Futurible, bringing his own spin on the sound of Italy's cop B-movies. If you're into Italian soundtracks, Italodisco or wine-bar Balearic, this curio is for you my friend.

Jonny Greenwood

Bodysong

    ‘Bodysong’ is an album by Radiohead member Jonny Greenwood as well as a soundtrack to a film of the same name. On the album, Greenwood fuses elements of jazz, electronic, classical and experimental music.

    The soundtrack was originally released in 2003. Now remastered by Christian Wright.

    Following up two expertly written 12"s that actually played more like mini-albums, comes this sprawling debut LP from Swiss modular overlord Benjamin Kilchhofer. To say artist and label have had a quick ascension to stardom is somewhat of an understatement, with Fact, RA and many other tastemaking websites listing the label and artist in the Best of 2017 lists - but we were there first folks!

    A double album across 20 (!) tracks, it perfectly encapsulates Kilchhofer's electro-biotic futurescapes - other world exotica and interplanetary fauna. If Kilchhofer's world is created by pieces of modular equipment - sequencers, filters, CV-control devices etc, then it's surely populated by a hybrid of organic and electronic lifeforms - cyborg birdsong, mutant frog croaks and the hiss of electro-static solar winds permeating through each and every track as Kilchofer navigates the plasma-stream cutting right through the centre of this cybernetic rainforest.

    Adjectives and abstraction aside, the album skirts between bedroom electronica, nu-exotica and experimental styles: Don't DJ, RAMZi and label mate Burnt Friendman all spring to mind, as does NY duo The Books; however these are merely vague comparisons: Kilchofer's world exists solely on its own.

    Although slightly too expansive and almost difficult to navigate, this simply opens up this epic long player for multiple listens; as if joining a route at different stages up and down river, riding the boat, then jumping off at different docks. The first disc eases us into the terrain, atmospheres and soft undulations, while disc two sees more rhythmic content introduced; signaling a deep immersion in the environment. Once you've reached the end of the record a content feeling of deep resonance with artist and record are reached. I strongly recommend taking psychedelics to this breathtaking 'diary' of work.


    STAFF COMMENTS

    Matt says: One of my favourite artists and labels of 2017 returns with a nothing short of epic double album, detailing Kilchhofer's rich and evocative sonic world. One for mushroom season make no mistake!

    FORMAT INFORMATION

    2xLtd LP Info: Double LP with beautifully detailed, hand drawnn inner sleeves by Jake Fried and a detailed insert by Benjamin Kilchhofer.

    Originally released by Prestige in 1956, "More Moondog" finally gets remastered (at Abbey Road no less) and reissued by Honest Jon's. The 16 tracks were all recorded while Moondog was homeless and living on the streets. This is Moondog at his most direct, original, fresh, playful and unpretentious, featuring the Honking Geese, Tony Schwartz's brilliant outdoors recordings (particularly improved in Honest Jon's new version), with interventions from a ship's foghorn, a tapdancer and a cocker spaniel, and signature rhythms for homemade instruments trimba, oo, tuji, yukh, and ostrich feathers.




    Originally released on Prestige in 1957, now remastered at Abbey Road and re-released by Honest Jon's. The unexpected directions taken by Moondog's roving imaginations are represented here, spread over 14 tracks, all recorded between 1956 and 1957 while he was homeless and performing on the streets. This is Moondog at his most direct, original, fresh, playful and unpretentious, featuring the Honking Geese, Tony Schwartz's brilliant outdoors recordings (particularly improved in Honest Jon's new version), with interventions from a ship's foghorn, a tapdancer and a cocker spaniel, and signature rhythms for his home made instruments trimba, oo, tuji, yukh, and ostrich feathers.




    Various Artists

    Spider-Jazz - KPM Cues Used In The Amazing Animated Series - That We Are Not Allowed To Mention For Legal Reasons

    At the good ship Piccadilly we almost always offer our own reviews, but on this occasion I'll leave it to the man himself, Mr. Jonny Trunk.

    'Rare and brilliant music as used in the late 1960s Amazing animated series we are not allowed to mention for legal reasons.

    Way back in 1967, an animated superhero cartoon was released into the world. It was created by Grantray-Lawrence Animation and was based on a web-spinning, crime fighting blue and red dressed character that had originated in1962, in Marvel Comics by Stan Lee and Steve Ditko. This amazing series (that we’re not allowed to mention the name of for legal reasons) ran on ABC TV in the USA, then Canada, then a few years later started to spread its web further, running here in the UK throughout summer holidays, after school and possibly early mornings at weekends in the late 1970s. The series then got released on VHS video (and probably Betamax too) in the mid 1980s and still continues to spin its animated magic around the world through further broadcasts, YouTube and DVDs.

    The series was notoriously low budget, with animated errors everywhere and numerous scenes, sequences and backgrounds being re-used all the time, often across the same episode. Even a certain spider logo on a costume would appear with six legs, then eight legs later on, then back to six again in the same show.

    Series One opened with a newly written spider theme, a classic, hooky song all about doing whatever spiders can, and had, as Big George (RIP) once pointed out to me, a set of session singers falling slightly out of time with the backing track after the first verse. Series One also featured background music by jobbing composers Bob Harris and Ray Ellis but these cues and master tapes are now believed to be lost.

    After Series One the company Grantray-Lawrence went bankrupt, so the amazing spider series (that we’re not allowed to mention for legal reasons) was taken on by producer Steve Krantz. He brought in new talent, including animation director Ralph Bakshi who later went on to turn a Robert Crumb strip cartoon into the feature Fritz The Cat. Krantz also slashed the already cripplingly small spider budget, and brought in the idea of using economic library music. Here, thanks possibly to an independent sync agent (it has been suggested that a company called Music Sound Track Services may have been the one) production turned to the KPM catalogue. This was one of the few really established library catalogues around at the time with a modern edge; it was full of fabulous, modern dramatic music tracks – often all on the same LP. But more importantly all the tracks were far longer than the one minute musical cuts that many of the fledgling USA library companies were issuing at the time. Not only would this KPM music be efficient, affordable and very easy to use, it would also mean syndication worldwide would not be held up by any future musical issues. Krantz produced two amazing spider series (that we’re not allowed to mention for legal reasons), and both were smothered with KPM music. In fact barely a spider second goes by without music playing in either the background or foreground.

    For many years I – and many nostalgic others - have been thinking about putting this vinyl album together. For many enthusiasts this really is formative music – a junior foray into hip swinging crime jazz and esoteric musical grooviness. I’ve also read on line accounts by DJs from WFMU on the trail of original spider master tapes, and there’s even a whole forum dedicated to “Spidey-Jazz”. Then recently I was looking at an old spider tracklist and realized that several of my favourite KPM cues were there including Syd Dale’s “Hell Raisers” and “Walk And Talk”, both from one of the most elusive and desirable KPM albums of all time (yes, you just try and find yourself a copy of KPM 1002 right now), so I decided to push on and get the album made.

    So, what features on this Spider-Jazz Lp? Well it’s music from the amazing TV series we are not allowed to mention for legal reasons, BUT, not music from Series One. No, but it is all from Series Two and Series Three. From looking at archival cue sheets, over 50 tracks from various early KPM 1000 series albums were used across episodes. I’ve distilled this down into one exciting and enthralling LP, and if this works a further Spider Jazz album may well swing in to production. If you’re interested (and I’m sure you may well be) cues here came from KPM1001, KPM1002, KPM1015, KPM1017, KPM1018 and KPM1043 and were composed by master library composers of the era – Dale, Hawkshaw, Hawksworth, Mansfield etc.

    And if you are listening over there in the USA, you may well recognize many of the cues here not just from the amazing TV series (that we’re not allowed to mention for legal reasons) but also from classic 1960s and 1970s NFL highlight shows that we are allowed to mention. 

    FORMAT INFORMATION

    Coloured LP Info: Amazing red vinyl with blue splatter.

    LP Info: Black vinyl edition.


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