Back in '76 or so, Mario Bava wanted in on some of Argento's azione in the film music department. For his movies, Dario had enlisted some homegrown twentysomethings fresh from sessions in England as an outfit alternately called Oliver and Cherry Five. The quartet, rechristened Goblin, had cranked up their amplifiers to score Dario's two very popular films, the bloody Profondo Rosso and the supernaturally-inclined Suspiria. Bava wanted the same kind of sonorous edge for his next foray into celluloid, and the man — who inspired many with his 1956 pic Vampiri, I (known in the USA as The Devil's Commandment) — wasn't about to give Dario a ring and ask him to loan out "his" band.
Enter Libra, a similarly fresh-bearded fivesome; seems like Bava's luck the
vein had struck, to put it as Will would. Each chord fingered for Schock proved that. Like Goblin, Libra had already recorded an album of original music and were no strangers to the studio or stage (in fact, Libra's members were a few years older), but the quintet's sounds for Schock are so Goblinoid, it's fairly eerie. The staccato piano runs and Moog licks of "The Shock" are tonally and stylistically very similar. Whether Allesandro "Sandro" Centofanti intentionally paralleled Claudio Simonetti is of no concern. The insular, prevalently ambient-electronic spaces of the "Transfert" pieces contrast the energy of the title theme, and the long version of "Il Fantasma Suona Il Piano" is equally delicate and decadent.
Speaking of Goblin, there is a connection: Walter Martino replaced David Walter on drums, and Maurizio Guarini (who joined Goblin after Martino's split following Profondo Rosso) contributes some keyboard parts — though he wasn't credited on the original vinyl release! That, and guitarist Carlo Pennisi and bassist Dino Cappa were in versions of Flea/Etna – the former included post-Martino Goblin drummer Agostino Marangolo, and the latter featured the Guarini brothers (the other being the drummer). Small world.
Nick another forward slash for Cinevox, the label that's guilty of supplying hours of listening pleasure — and keeping wallets lighter. Vive le terrore!
1. The Shock 4:07
2. L'Altalena Rossa 1:28
3a. Transfert I 1:31
–b. Hypnos 1:57
–c. Transfert II 1:20
4. La Baia 2:18
5a. La Cantina 1:55
–b. The Shock (reprise) 1:07
6a. Tema Di Marco 1:05
–b. Tema Di Marco II 2:31
7. L'Incubo 3:33
8. Transfert III 1:34
9. Il Fantasma Suona Il Piano 1:56
10a. Transfert IV 3:10
—b. Tema Di Marco II (reprise) 0:54
— Bonus Tracks —
11. Il Fantasma Suona Il Piano (Alternate long version) 2:47
12. The Shock (Alternate movie version) 1:40
13. Tema Di Marco (Alternate movie version) 1:38
14. Transfert IV (Alternate movie version) 2:54
Total time – 39:21