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Keith Emerson: At The Movies (Reissue)

Lights! Camera! Portentous keyboards!

A remastered edition of the three-CD compilation of Emerson’s work on film soundtracks (originally released in 2005), this also serves as a compendium of most of his solo work in the first half of the 80s.

After ELP’s split he kept busy with some prestige scores: 1980’s Inferno, the Dario Argento chiller and 1981’s Nighthawks, for a Sylvester Stallone-Rutger Hauer thriller, established him as a viable atmosphere-provider. The Argento score was harshly compared to Goblin’s grand follies on Suspiria, and the ultra-violent Stallone film wasn’t a big hit, yet Emerson’s efforts were a compelling mix of cod-religious pomp and glacial shudders. His disco cover of Spencer Davis Group’s I’m A Man, with Emerson managing functional vocals, is a love-hate moment. 1986’s Murderock was an Italian ‘giallo’ film bizarrely turned into a musical at the eleventh hour because of Flashdance’s popularity. Also included are_ Best Revenge_, Harmagedon, another Italian horror, La Chiesa, then a gap until 2004’s dodgy Japanese offering Godzilla: Final Wars. Film music’s often compromised by studio committees, but Nighthawks and Inferno have real identity. CR