From the same team that brought you the IFMCA award-winning Quo Vadis (Best Archival Re-recording of an Existing Score, 2012) comes The Salamander (1981), one of Jerry Goldsmith’s most requested titles. The original recording is lost, presumably forever. Undaunted, producer James Fitzpatrick set out to find the original score and orchestral parts for a re-recording. When these, too, could not be found, he hired experienced orchestrator Leigh Phillips to reconstruct everything by ear! The result is this second entry in a series of new and complete Goldsmith recordings on Prometheus Records (following their stunning re-recording of Hour of the Gun).
The only film directed by expert film editor Peter Zinner, The Salamander was based on a Morris L. West novel about an attempt by neo-fascists to seize power in early 1970s Italy. With a fine cast (including Anthony Quinn, Christopher Lee, Eli Wallach, Sybil Danning and Martin Balsam), the film was ravaged by critics and never found an audience. But Goldsmith’s outstanding score resonated with fans, and their fervent wish for a recording has at last been granted.
Goldsmith fashioned a striking and subtly varied score for The Salamander using primarily just three basic elements: a four-note motif; a terse, three-note rhythmic figure; and a tender love theme. He augmented his standard orchestra with synthesized percussion and electronics. The music is rife with exciting action cues and nail-biting musical suspense. A unique highlight of the score is Goldsmith’s re-imagining of the “Lachrymosa” movement from Mozart’s Requiem, sung at a state funeral early in the film.
Filling out this Prometheus CD are excerpts from two other Goldsmith scores – each from the mid-1970s: The Cassandra Crossing and Ransom. The 16-page booklet, illustrated with photos of the recording sessions, includes an essay on film and score by Frank K. DeWald and a note on the production by Fitzpatrick. Nic Raine conducts the City of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus.
1. THE SALAMANDER MAIN TITLES 1:44
2. FUNERAL: REQUIEM FOR A GENERAL 2:38
3. WOODPECKER / NEO-FASCIST TRAINING / LAWYERS / DEAD PEOPLE 2:38
4. DANTE RUNS UPSTAIRS / THE SURGEON 1:22
5. DANTE AND LILI 2:28
6. THE CAR CHASE 1:40
7. ISLAND ADVENTURE 5:25
8. DANTE / ZURICH / LILI 4:14
9. MANZINI / ASSASSINATION ATTEMPT 2:14
10. PHOTOGRAPHS / STEFFI’S ABDUCTION 2:22
11. STEFFI’S DEAD / THE MORTUARY 2:19
12. CAR BOMB / TORTURE / DEATH OF THE SURGEON 3:49
13. PHONE CALL TO LILI / THE FOREST 2:11
14. THE GUESTS ARRIVE / AFTER THE SHOW ENDED 2:34
15. GOODBYES & END TITLES 5:30
16. THE CASSANDRA CROSSING Concert Suite 5:42
(Main Titles / The Climber)
17. RANSOM Concert Suite 8:12
(Sky Chaser / Main Theme)