Piero Umiliani

Piero's Pleasure: The Touch of Piero Umiliani

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Piero Umiliani isn't nearly as well known as Ennio Morricone or Nino Rota, in part because the films he scored haven't been widely seen outside Italy. But he was also an Italian soundtrack composer who was prolific during the '60s and ;70s, with 30 excerpts from 1965-1975 films (all but two of the tracks hailing from 1965-1970) jammed onto this nearly 80-minute CD. While it's not too similar to Morricone (though the grand finale to "Roy Colt & Winchester Jack" comes uncannily close, particularly vis-à-vis its spaghetti western guitar lope), Umiliani's work will appeal to fans of Morricone and Italian soundtracks of the era in general for its unpredictable, imaginative eclecticism. If what's on this disc is representative, he certainly favors the playful, whimsical side more than Morricone and some other high-profile Italian film composers do. There's a collision of elements that most listeners would think rare to find used in combination with each other, like go-go jazz, cheesy organ, dreamy European easy listening music, and bits of pieces from mariachi, twangy rock guitar, spy themes, chirpy (sometimes downright goofy) incidental vocals, and what would later come to be known as space age bachelor pad grooves. Taken as it is from ten different soundtracks, Piero's Pleasure covers enough different grounds and moods that's it's hard to generalize about the music or pick out highlights. The important thing is that it's consistently entertaining and grin-provoking, and highly recommended to those with even a fairly moderate interest in the style, even if it's a little to the lightweight side of the genre's true heavyweights.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time Stream
1 1:55
2 1:10
3 1:53
4 2:26
5 1:41
6 2:01 Amazon
7 2:32 Amazon
8 1:17 Amazon
9 3:37 Amazon
10 8:25
11 1:39 Amazon
12 3:29 Amazon
13 2:32 Amazon
14 3:29
15 2:44 Amazon
16 1:37 Amazon
17 2:42
18 3:52
19 3:04
20 3:43
21 2:33
22 3:02
23 1:59
24 1:43
25 2:25
26 2:20
27 3:10
28 2:56 Amazon
29 1:52
30 1:49
blue highlight denotes track pick