Friday, June 26, 2015

THE FIRST ELECTRIC WESTERN


The soundtrack to the film Zachariah is a tough one. Though the James Gang and Doug Kershaw are splashed on the cover along with Country Joe & the Fish, White Lightnin', and the New York Rock Ensemble, it is the music scored and conducted by Jimmie Haskell which takes up seven of the 14 tracks. "Laguna Salad" and "Country Fever" are the two contributions by Joe Walsh and the James Gang, and that's really all the solid rock & roll you're going to get. Doug Kershaw's "Ballad of Job Cain" has him preaching over a fiddle, while Country Joe & the Fish give a nice barroom piano stomp on "We're the Crackers." "All I Need" by Country Joe is a cute little folk tune with mouth harp which follows Jimmy Haskell's loud "William Tell Overture." This version is akin to what Electric Light Orchestra did to "Roll Over Beethoven." If you think the music here is all over the map, well, it is. It almost feels like producer Bill Szymczyk and Jimmie Haskell were vacillating on how far they should go with the country and with the rock, and though they've tempered the mix, it isn't going to be a favorite disc of people who like one style of music over the other. The New York Rock Ensemble deliver a bluesy psychedelia, almost Quicksilver Messenger Service, while White Lightnin's "Shy Ann" is bluegrass. Jimmy Haskell follows the mix with mood music, and a pop conclusion in "Zachariah (End Title)." For collectors of film music, it is a solid effort. However, there's just a small taste for fans of the groups splashed on the front cover. The James Gang at least get to shoot up the joint as their music is the loudest and makes the most impact here, Joe Walsh having fun, as he usually does. An All Music Review





3 comments:

Steve King said...

I got this lp from a bargain bin before I ever saw the movie. At that time this was the only place to get the 2 Country Joe & Fish songs and the 2 James Gang songs. Of the James Gang songs one is a instrumental the other comes from a very brief time when Joe Walsh tired of being the lead singer so they added a new guy to the group, recorded the two songs for the movie and then fired him before filming began. Leaving Joe to lip sync the guys vocals in the film. And I really like the rocking version of The William Tell Overture on here. And the voice of the Used Horse Salesman found here is the recently late, Dick Van Patton. A young Don Johnson is one of the lead characters in the movie.
Thank you Bill for these last two posts. It's very kind of you. I'm filling some holes in my library. Would I be pushing my luck to ask if you have the Candy OST?

24HOURDEJAVU said...

Sorry steVe but I do not have the Candy soundtrack will keep an eye out for it Bill

Private Beach said...

I just found the Candy soundtrack at http://spychedelicsally.blogspot.hk/2013/11/candy-original-soundtrack-from-motion.html

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