May 2003 Film Music CD Reviews

Film Music Editor: Gary S. Dalkin
Managing Editor: Ian Lace
Music Webmaster Len Mullenger

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Assassination Tango  
Music composed by Luis Bacalov
  Luis Bacalov and his Orchestra
With original tangos as source material from the 1940s
  Available On:RCA VICTOR 09026 64023 2  
Running Time: 35:43
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assassination tango

This album is a roughly equal mix of well-known tango source music from the 1940s and 50s all neatly dovetailed to fit the dramatic requirements of the film. Dramatic curt-rhythmed staccato accordions are heard in the two opening tracks for instance: ‘Racing Club’ a 1949 tango and from 1941, ‘Tres Equinas’ (with proud defiant male vocalist). Slinky and sexy ‘Compadreando’ is another exciting tango with a wooden block inserted into the instrumentation and a most attractive Latin beat. Clearly these, and several more, are heard in mono reproduction. Track three bursts in, in modern stereo with Bacalov’s ‘Building the Bullet’ that offers a softer legato fiddle but no loss of excitement as tempo quickens with drums, bass, accordion and piano. Bacalov’s ‘First Kill’ has a hint of quickening menace in high string harmonics and remote bass chords and then sinister violin material reminiscent of the James Bond theme but with the basic tango rhythm drive. In contrast, Bacalov’s ‘Seduction’ is a lovely relaxed romantic number while his ‘Landing in Argentina’ is more akin to the score’s source tangos. ‘Second Kill’ has an interesting use of the basic tango structure to create a tense sinister atmosphere and again there is that hint of Bond.

A welcome and attractive variation on the thriller genre score

Ian Lace

**** 4

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