James Clarke - Mystery Movie LP
Label: Be With
Release Date: November 23rd, 2018
Be With Records presents a reissue of James Clarke's Mystery Movie, originally released in 1974. Mystery Movie was originally billed as "modern, small group compositions in various moods. Ideally suited to the new Americanized style of T.V. and cinema film where music is used to create the mood and carry the action". So this collection covers a lot of bases, but it does so brilliantly and has absolutely no right to be such a fantastic listen from start to finish. Mystery Movie is best known for the slick drum breaks underpinning the top-notch jazz-funk chase theme "Car Patrol", the fuzz riffing and ARP soloing of "The Heavies" and the slow-mo strut of "Mystery Moll". "Study In Fear" and "Empty Streets" are horror soundtrack fodder of the finest sort. However, it's the understated, plaintive pieces that are the most rewarding. Ambient feels and strung-out fried-folk treats, full of cyclical naïve melodies, this is music that evokes the "downlifting" Ronnie Lane and Ron Wood instrumentals from their great Mahoney's Last Stand (1976), as well as the beautiful soundtrack work of Jack Nitzsche and Ry Cooder. One might also recognize "Waiting Game" from being sampled by melodic downbeat masters Express Rising. Check "Relaxed Theme", "Quiet Girl", "Routine Procedure" and "Quietness Sustained" for a melodic, melancholic set, with the last three performed on just acoustic guitar and harp. Be With has worked with the hallowed KPM to re-issue ten of our favorites from across the KPM 1000 Series and the Themes International Music catalogue, currently under KPM stewardship. Whether it's killer soul-funk, sweet jazz-samba, scuzzed-up guitars or accidental Balearic beauty, these records include some of the most innovative work from some of the most talented composers and musicians of the 20th century. These records were never readily available, being originally released as a ready-made, affordable alternative to commissioning music for television and radio. Consequentially the originals have been unobtainable for decades by all but the most dedicated collectors. The audio for all ten re-issues comes from the original analog tapes and has been remastered for vinyl by Be With regular Simon Francis. The same care has been taken with the sleeves, handing the reproduction duties over to Richard Robinson, the current custodian of KPM's brand identity.