Here’s a quick look at two soundtracks to Eurospy films from the sixties, composed by Mario Nascimbene. Both movies are set in Rio, so their soundtracks feature a lot of Latin American bossa nova lounge grooves.
Dick Smart is a pretty wild Eurospy production directed by Franco Prosperi. It features Richard Wyler as swinging sixties dilettante, womaniser, and part-time spy, Dick Smart. Smart is hired by the CIA, for a fee of one million dollars, after five atomic scientists go missing from around the world.
Nascimbene’s score is very good, and the hook will get stuck in your head for days, even weeks perhaps. You will find yourself humming the theme after you’ve finished listening to the album. As the film is primarily set in and around Rio, the soundtrack features a lot of Latin beats, like Sambas and Bossa Novas. Each track gives away it’s musical style in it’s title ‘Samba For Dick’, ‘Bossa For Dick’ etc… There are no vocals until the end track. The male vocal is quite flat – it almost seems spoken. But the instrumentals are quite good, although slightly repetitive, but it is a soundtrack, so you’d expect that a few musical motif’s are repeated.
If the album has a weakness, it is that sometimes the instrumentals tend toward ‘elevator music’ with weird sixties electronic sound effects over the top. At the end of the CD, there are some musical cues and control room dialogue from Nascimbene. It is an interesting curio – but doesn’t add much. But still it isn’t a bad album. If you’re a fan of Eurospy Soundtracks, I’d buy this one. I wasn’t disappointed.
01 Main Titles Theme
02 Dick Smart Investigates
03 The Amazing World Of Dick Smart
04 The Chase #1
05 Discotheque Party
06 Dick Smart In Action
07 Swimming Pool Bossa Party
08 The Chase #2
09 My Name Is Smart…Dick Smart
10 Samba For Dick
11 The Chase #3
12 The DS 2.007 Shake
13 Kiss Kiss, Girl Girl
14 Bossa For Dick
15 Background Exotica
16 The DS 2.007 Shake #2
18 Il Tuo Sguardo Atomico – End title Song
Next, Kiss The Girls And Make Them Die
Composed and arranged by Mario Nascimbene.
Released by Avanz Records
Firstly, I’ll admit that I haven’t seen Kiss The Girls And Make Them Die, so it’s difficult to place the music in context with the film, but as a stand alone listening experience, this is great. It is better than the Dick Smart soundtrack, but is similar in so many ways. Once again, the film is set in Rio, so the soundtrack has a Latin American feel to it. Although there is a lot more variety on the Kiss The Girls And Make Them Die soundtrack. The closing title song, although not listed on the album, is performed by Lydia Macdonald (I think. Please correct me if you know otherwise). Macdonald, while hardly a household name these days, was a very busy girl in the 1960’s especially singing title songs to Eurospy films. She can be found singing ‘Don’t Ever Let Me Go’ on the soundtrack to Requiem For A Secret Agent; ‘Nothing To Fear’ from MMM Missione Morte Molo 83, and the title track to From The Orient With Fury.
As with the Dick Smart, Kiss The Girls also has a few weird sci-fi electronic soundscapes. No doubt, if I had seen the film I’d know what these are. Most likely they are from scenes in the film, where the chief villain is test firing his latest hi-tech weapon. These call be a little bit grating. They aren’t really ‘lounge’ tunes, and as such aren’t really easy listening. But on the whole, this is a pretty good soundtrack album. It’s a bit harder to track down than Dick Smart, but once again, if you are a fan of this type of soundtrack, this is worth hunting down.
01 Kiss The Girls And Make Them Die (Main Titles)
02 Kelly Captured
03 Carnival In Rio
04 Scientist’s Laboratory
05 Love Scene
06 Susanne’s Revelation And Arrest – Escape
07 Car Chase
08 Kelly’s Pursuit – Frozing The Girls
09 Kelly Captured (Alternate Version)
10 Frozing The Scientist
11 Kiss The Girls And Make Them Die (With Harps)
12 Susanne And Kelly
13 Guaracha (Version 1)
14 Guaracha (Version 2)
15 Kiss The Girls And Make Them Die (Finale)