Although I was raised around Sergio Leone movies, I only recently started to explore the Spaghetti Western genre. Of course I started with ‘Once Upon a Time in the West,’ which was to be Leone’s final outing in Westerns before he was pulled back in for ‘Duck, You Sucker!’. Co-written and directed by Dario Argento and Bernardo Bertolucci, ‘Once Upon a Time in the West’ received mainly negative reviews upon release but has since been restored to its full run time on Netflix and is gaining new popularity.
The music of Ennio Morricone is so distinctive and closely associated with the Spaghetti Western (one can hardly see Clint Eastwood’s face without hearing the signature tune from ‘The Good the Bad and the Ugly.’ Ennio Morricone is so particular to the look and feel of this type of film that he provided the score for Quentin Tarrantino’s latest film ‘Django Unchained.’ Add revolutionary musician John Zorn to Morricone’s scores and you get something truly special.
I have followed Zorn since I first found a cassette of Naked City in a used music shop and this album is among my favorites. Hearing everything from the title track ‘The Big Gundown’ to ‘The Ballad of Hank McCain’ translated through the screaming cacophonous filter of Zorn’s ear is a treat. Recently I was stuck driving on the highway through torrential rain and listening to this album made it… epic.
If you are a fan of this kind of thing, I recommend the following. If you aren’t, investigate because you are missing out my friend.