Paul Osborne`s Project Gemini is a love-letter to the musician`s favourite soundtracks. Paying tribute to both giants, like Lalo Schifrin, and lesser known composers, such as Luis Bacalov. Enlisting assistance from guitarists Kid Victoria and “Little Barrie” Cadogan, and drummer, Shuzin, over the last 3 years the outfit have released a series of limited singles on Jerusalem-based label, Delights. Some of those sides have now been collected, and expanded on, for an album signed to Brighton`s Mr. Bongo. There are 14 tracks in total, including a few interludes, that plot a course through imagined rituals, enchanted gardens, and shallow graves. The standouts, as you might expect, are totally cinematic.
There are ultra-authentic giallo grooves, such as the opening, title cut, The Children Of Scorpio – a hit of head-nodding funk that counters gentle hypnotic ringing with treated, tortured organ grind, and tempers distorted psyche licks with freak folk hippie harmonies. The press release cites Dirty Harry, and David Axelrod`s work with The Electric Prunes, but I also hear Giuliano Sorgini`s great John Dalton Street. The Turning treads in a similar Italian exploitation flick direction, but surrounds its big break with sound effects a la concrete kings, Michel Colombier & Pierre Henry. This is music for fans of fellow revivalists / enthusiasts, Trees Speak, though leaning more toward the library than the kosmische. Another point of recent reference is the damn fine Discodor.
Path Through The Forest is rockier. Beats like Claude Cooper letting loose and fuzzbox fretwork worthy of The Animated Egg. Bells all the while tolling, before making way for a sinister synth solo. Road To The Hills begins with an eerie whistle, a touch of the Sergio Leones / Ennio Morricones with the rhythm pushed to the fore. Closing Theme, likewise, is a Spaghetti Western-flavoured score. A vintage analogue wig-out, packing an acoustic strum and harpsichord, that summons scenes of anti-heroes riding toward the horizon, after facing their own personal high noon.
Project Gemini`s The Children Of Scorpio is released today, on Mr Bongo.