Chato’s Land – Complete Score – Limited Edition – Jerry Fielding
Newly edited and remastered CD of powerhouse Jerry Fielding soundtrack! After lengthy career of films both popular and obscure, Charles Bronson teamed with director Michael Winner in 1972 to create Chato’s Land. Two years later, Winner brought genuine superstardom to the physically commanding actor in Death Wish. Chato is a halfbreed Apache who kills a local sheriff in self defense, runs and finds himself pursued by a large posse of vengeance-minded townsfolk. Numerous familiar faces include Jack Palance, Richard Basehart, James Whitmore, Simon Oakland, Richard Jordan, Ralph Waite. Gerald Wilson scripts, keeps the film on target with nary an unnecessary subplot or distraction. Stark, violent action is name of the game with a particularly strong ending. Not your routine western by any means! United Artists presents with Winner also producing. Composer Jerry Fielding follows his terse western score for Winner’s Lawman (1971) with intense score less reliant on thematic unity than smaller motifs, dynamic percussion rhythms, tense harmonic structure. Dry as the landscape, aggressive as the violence. Launching with lengthy opening “Titles”, Fielding offers his primary motif right at the outset, proceeds to work the cue with dynamics both pianissimo, fortissimo, with spotlights not only on brass but also military percussion (snare, bass drum) for Palance in Civil War garb right down to his saber. Great sequence! Entire score plays off suggestions of Native American flavor melding with brutal racism of the tale. Two ideas do musical battle throughout. Fielding’s penchant for vivid percussion writing sands out with this non-traditional western score. Amongst highlights are lively “Indian Rodeo”, brief but riveting “Ride Like Hell”, graphic “Joan Of Arc At Stake”. Serving special spotlight is Fielding’s final coda. After last action sequence of “Malachite Gets Shot and Finis”, Winner brings picture to powerful close with striking final imagery. Fielding drives dramatic visuals home with knockout burst of snare drum-led orchestral hits. No big ending chords here, Fielding instead slams fortissimo punctuation in percussion right down to the very end. Dynamic and memorable! Intrada first presented complete score in 2008. New issue, courtesy MGM, features newly remastered audio plus new editing that allows cues to play aa Fielding original scored them, without additional musical assemblies of earlier edition. Original release liner notes by Nick Redman are reprised plus new flipper-style cover designed by Kay Marshall that allows both original United Artists artwork campaign or later home video design. Orchestrations by Greig McRitchie, Lennie Niehaus. Jerry Fielding composes, conducts.