Fifteen CDs is a big setâ€”and a bargain for $99.95. But in what sense is GDMâ€™s big holiday release a â€œComplete Editionâ€? Obviously itâ€™s not everything the Maestro has written; that couldnâ€™t be done in ten times as many discs.
The avowed effort here is, for the first time in a single collection, to offer a sampling of Ennio Morriconeâ€™s work in every one of the specialized fields of musical composition in which he has worked. The set is organized accordingly: Music for Cinema (9 discs); Music for Television (2 discs); and one disc each covering Contemporary Classical Music, Orchestral Arrangements, Hit Song Arrangements, and Original Songs.
If you bought GDMâ€™s previous extravaganza, Ennio Morricone: The Super Gold Edition (GDM Music srl, 0168292GDM; 6 discs, avail. at $45-85), you may well wonder whether the cinema music portion of this new collection replaces that previous set. No, it doesnâ€™t. While the vast majority of the cuts on the previous set are also included in the present one, there are several instances in which a film represented in the earlier box set is represented this time by a different excerpt, or none at all. So if you buy the new box, thereâ€™s reason to hang on to the earlier one as well.
Like the earlier box, this new setâ€™s CDs are all in matching format, featuring the same superb pencil portrait of Morricone at mid-age; unlike the earlier box, the new one has color-coded the CDs, so one can always grab the right sleeve to consult the contents of the current disc. A big difference between the new set and the old one is that the works on the new set are presented in chronological order, enabling you to trace the evolution of the Morricone touch from the late â€™50s right through to last year, spotting patterns, repetitions, variations, and increasingly complex and inventive stylistic gestures.