Jessie Lilley
Buddy Barnett
Brad Linaweaver

November 2009     Web Edition     Issue #3

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La Poliziotta s/t

Gianni Ferrio

GDM Music, distributed by Digitmovies Altenative Entertainment

Listening to the great Gianni Ferrio's score for the 1974 Italian romcom La Poliziotta is like sampling the '70s themselves—the orchestral parts that is. Mixing in equal parts Oliver Nelson, Joćo Gilberto, Henry Mancini and Toots Thielemans, it forms a kind of JelloTM mold of musical motifs from the period, never offensive but never particularly flavorful either.If that sounds like a bad review it isn't. In fact, I love this shit. Give me some Bossa Nova and Samba and I'm good to go. Here's a soundtrack album that goes to the trouble of giving the listener no less than eight versions of the love theme, and damned if each one isn't a stand-alone gem.

That love theme, in case you're wondering, is "Almost Love" and Ferrio gives us versions that evoke the best of Oliver Nelson's TV themes ("Ironside," "It Takes a Thief"), Mancini's strings and Thielemans' harp lines, damn near note for note. And if eight versions of the same theme don't get it stuck in your head, then nothing can. And trust me, it's a theme you don't mind having there.

Of course not, everyone has an appetite for Gilberto-esque Bossa Nova, but fear not. The soundtrack also knows how to unleash '70s funk all up on your ass. Listen to "Rhythm and Sex" or "Step by Step," and find yourself in the middle of a velour-and-J&B party scenes, where the music is fat with slap bass and wahwah guitar lines.

Fact is, there are so many styles thrown against the wall you get the feeling that Steno, the film's mono-named director (he also went by Steno Monicelli and Stefano Vanzini – music ed), said, "I want every orchestral style represented at least once," only he said it in Italian and waved his hands in the air a lot. I'm glad he did. It's a damn good listen.

— Greg Ferrara