Danger Mouse aka Brian Burton is production’s polymath, collaborating across genre (and probably tearing it down along the way) with acts as diverse as Jemini, MF DOOM (the Mouse and the Mask), CeeLo Green (Gnarls Barkley), and James Mercer of the Shins (Broken Bells). Now he’s joined forces with veteran Italian score composer Daniele Luppi to kick out the cowboy jams.
Well, not jams exactly. The songs on their new release, Rome, are tributes to the golden age of the spaghetti western, a time when composers like the legendary Ennio Morricone devised the musical scores to films like The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly. The album has a nice mix of brief, lush interludes, longer instrumental compositions and complete tracks with vocals provided by Jack White and Norah Jones. It’s polished and enough of a departure from its inspirations, which seems like a pretty difficult thing to do; as a composer, Ennio Morricone casts a pretty long shadow. And while Danger Mouse and Luppi owe a lot to Morricone (many of the singers and musicians on the album are the same ones that recorded Morricone’s soundtracks fifty years ago), they bring their own substantial contributions to the table as well.
Now all it needs is a movie to go along with it.