October 11, 2015
The show was announced back in August and as soon as I saw it, I knew I had to go and wasted no time in ordering my ticket. I even went with the VIP option to get the chance to meet the man himself, plus get a spiffy commemorative poster. Anyway, with ticket purchased, the hardest thing to deal with was the wait. Waiting is such a hard thing to do when you have such a highly anticipated event. Fortunately. The time did pass and the day of the show arrived. The trick was to get to the show on on time. The venue is a good three hours away on the edge of Philadelphia. I thought I gave myself enough time, but s a little traffic going through Mahwah, NJ, paired with a nightmarish parking situation saw my arrival time bloom to four hours. I eventually found a parking space and made my way inside.
Once inside, I got in the VIP line to meet and get an autograph from the master himself, Fabio Frizzi. I approached the table with my VIP poster and a couple of CDs I bought at the table. Then came the moment to meet him, he was one of the nicest and friendliest fellows I have met. Seriously, he was just bubbling with enthusiasm and smiling from ear to ear, meeting all of us, signing our stuff, and posing for photographs. He was genuinely humbled by all of us fans and it showed. I am very glad to have gone with the VIP choice to meet him.
While waiting for the movie to begin, I hung around with some friends, including Editor in Chief of Fangoria magazine Michael Gingold, Hudson Horror Show mastermind Chris Alo, Doc Terror himself James Harris, Full Empire Promotions founder Dominic Mancini, Blood Farmers/Toxic drummer and Grindhouse graphic designer Tad Leger, among others. It was great hanging out with these guys. Still, they all come second to Fabio Frizzi, so when he took the stage with his band, it was time to block out all the friends and focus on the music.
Now, Fabio Frizzi was on the stage, but he was not alone. He was accompanied by filmmaker Scooter McRae who was going to give us the east coast premiere of his new short film, Saint Frankenstein, whose score was composed by Frizzi. Unfortunately, after about 15 minutes of struggling, and random cartoon dragon wallpaper, the film would not play. Scooter apologized and then the show began with Fabio and his band taking their positions.
They proceeded to rip through a progression of music both familiar and unfamiliar. He played pieces from Manhattan Baby, Four of the Apocalypse (which was comprised of songs as opposed to traditional scoring), The Psychic (aka Seven Notes in Black), Zombie (aka Zombi 2), City of the Living Dead, a suite of pieces from shorts (including Saint Frankenstein), a piece from the lesser known Lamberto Bava film Blastfighter, and of course, at the top of the heap, The Beyond. While he is playing, clips from the films play on a screen behind him.
I would be hard pressed to pick a favorite moment of the performance, as the entire thing was incredible. The show likely ranks among the best I have ever attended. I liked the stuff I was less familiar with, the Four of the Apocalypse songs and the piece from Blastfighter come to mind. I was surprised to see some of the “Matool” music from Zombi 2 played. The build to the eyeball scene from Zombi 2 was great, as was the explosion when they began a suite from The Beyond.
His band was first rate, in particular, the bass player was utterly phenomenal. It was also interesting to hear these pieces rearranged to be played in more of a rock format without the assistance of strings or woodwinds. The familiar stuff was instantly recognizable, but it was just a little different, making the performance feel all that much more unique.
I am not sure what else to say. The venue is small and intimate, allowing you to get right up to the stage. The sound was well mixed, and it was easy to separate all of the instruments. Then there is Frizzi, himself, who looked like he was having the time of his life. It was an incredible experience that I was glad to be a part of.
Posted by Christopher Beaumont at 10/11/2015 06:53:00 PM
Chris has been an avid movie watcher for decades, getting into the writing game in 2004. Since that time he has contributed to a number online publications as well as running CriticalOutcast.com. In addition to movies, Chris is a big fan of music, particularly metal, and will never give up hope on his beloved Mets.