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Big Gundown 15th Anniversary [Extra tracks, Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered]

John Zorn Audio CD
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)

Price: $15.97 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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MP3 Music, 16 Songs, 2000 $9.49  
Audio CD, Extra tracks, Original recording reissued, 2000 $15.97  

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. The Big Gundown 7:26Album Only
listen  2. Peur Sur La Ville 4:16$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Poverty (once Upon A Time In America) 3:49$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Milano Odea 3:02$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Erotico (the Burglars) 4:27$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Battle Of Algiers 3:50$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Giu La Testa (duck You Sucker!) 6:06$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Metamorfosi (la Glasse Operaia Va In Paradiso) 4:37$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Tre Kel 5000 4:37$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Once Upon A Time In The West 8:44Album Only
listen11. The Sicilian Clan 3:20$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. Macchie Solari 3:29$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. The Ballad Of Hank Mccain (vocal) 5:27$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen14. Svegliaffi & Uccidi 3:03$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen15. Chi Mai 3:06$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen16. The Ballad Of Hank Mccain (intrumental) 5:28$0.99  Buy MP3 

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 22, 2000)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Extra tracks, Original recording reissued, Original recording remastered
  • Label: Tzadik
  • ASIN: B00004W3KY
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #148,985 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

As if John Zorn's super-creative take on film composer Ennio Morricone weren't essential in its first iteration on Nonesuch Records, Zorn is celebrating the album's 15th anniversary with an updated, remastered version. The darker lows and brighter highs make this Gundown clearly superior--with its original cast of characters (Bill Frisell, Arto Lindsay, Diamanda Galas, and many more) sounding alternately darker, sultrier, and more cinematic than ever. Zorn's reticence to record the original album's 10 pieces looks altogether unreasonable, as his genius for adding color and dimension to Morricone's tunes shows profusely. To make this an even better deal, there are six new bonus tracks that feature Marc Ribot as part of an ad hoc string quartet on "The Sicilian Clan" and "Chi Mai," and as sparring partner with British avant guitar god Derek Bailey on the roaring "Svegliatti and Uccidi." This one's magnificently important. --Andrew Bartlett

Product Description

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yes, better than the original August 13, 2002
Format:Audio CD
I just recently took the plunge on this reissue of the Big Gundown, comparing it to my original Nonesuch CD, and the new one is a winner. The music is obviously the same, and great it still is, but I always regretted the thickness of sound and low-level mastering of the original CD. The reissue has cleaned, brightened and polished the sound to a much higher level, it blossoms immediately in the ears and is now superb. The additional tracks are a treat too, Chi Mai is one of Morricone's greatest and pithiest themes, although the manner of the new material is fairly straight-ahead. Also nice is the extensive liner notes, an addition from the original release and a departure for many other Tzadik-Zorn recordings. Zorn fans should go for this in an instant, as should the Zorn-curious. This is his single greatest and most important record.
Morricone fans, you should give this a try too! This will challenge your ears and your notions of one of your favorites, and that's a good thing. Zorn is always true both to the themes from the movies and the context of those movies, which is the most remarkable thing. But for those only used to straight renditions of the music, this CD will shock, because the music is put through a cut-and-paste technique that owes much to cartoon music, and a recontextualization that owes is all to a free-improvisation aesthetic. Don't let those ears and minds get flaccid, folks!
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Remastered Zorn/Morricone project better than ever! September 11, 2000
Format:Audio CD
The first thing to note here is that this Tzadik reissue/remaster of John Zorn's Ennio Morricone tribute "The Big Gundown" genuinely sounds better that the original Nonesuch CD release. This is particularly noticeable on the more noise/cut-up oriented pieces like 'Metamorfosi' and the Zorn original 'Tre Nel 5000', where previously obscure sounds now stand out with alarming clarity. If this side of Zorn isn't to your liking, lusher tracks like 'Poverty (Once Upon A Time In America)' add more color-- Guy Klucevsek's accordion, Toots Thielmans' harmonica and pitch-perfect whistling-- to the extended pallette of Zorn's first cover project. The new liner notes are extensive to a fault, while the bonus tracks offer some new pleasures that really make this disc worth buying. The bonus tracks are not from the original sessions; they were recorded recently to flesh out the disc, but they're more than mere filler. 'Svegliatti & Uccidi' pairs Marc Ribot and Derek Bailey for a delightful jarring guitar excursion, while members of the Masada chamber ensembles (Ribot, Mark Feldman, Greg Cohen et al) tackle 'The Sicilian Clan' and 'Chi Mai' with real gusto. But for me, the highlight of this album remains the last track on the original release: Jody Harris and Robert Quine sculpting a towering wall of electric guitar pasta on the title piece from Sergio Leone's 'Once Upon A Time In The West.' An essential part of any Zorn collection. Now if only Tzadik would reissue the News For Lulu sessions....
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Zorn's first masterpiece April 29, 2005
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
One of the best albums in Zorn's catalog, "The Big Gundown" is a masterpiece augmented in this 15th anniversary edition with a number of new recordings. These are reinterpretations of Mooricone pieces (with one Zorn original) for various groups. The entire record is powerful and energetic, with breathtaking arrangements, brilliant performances, and a fire that had not been captured in Zorn's previous recordings. It is also probably his first true masterpiece.

I think in many ways, the opener and title track best illustrates the aesthetic on the record, if you don't like that one, you'll probably not care for the rest of it-- it covers a number of moods, being dark, haunting, theatrical, explosive and esoteric, sometimes all at once. This sort of theatrical mood extends across a number of songs, the haunting circular piano and percussion workout "Peur Sur la Ville" (with a blazing alto sax solo from Tim Berne), an the dark electric guitar workout take of "Once Upon a Time in the West", reduced a funereal pace.

But there are also many moments of delicate beauty as well-- take for instance "Poverty (Once Upon a Time in America)", with an unusual instrumentation of whistling, harmonica (both handled by Toots Theilman), harp and accordian. Particularly when the harmonica takes the melody, the support swells and embraces and holds on, expressing pain and loss and fear for the future. Or consider the brooding and yet someone still light "Giu la Testa (Duck You Sucker!)", building anticipation through its dark motifs and bizarre instrumentation (among others, the Japanese shamisen, english horn, acoustic guitar, gamecalls and keyboards).
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars This is the first major Zorn album March 14, 2003
Format:Audio CD
Back in the mid-1980s, Zorn wrote new arrangements of Ennio Morricone's soundtrack music. He hired the best musicians to play the songs. Then, in 2000, he remastered the old album and filled out the disc with five more Morricone songs.
The result is CD that's all over the place, ranging from beautiful to ugly, from very complex to painfully simple. "Chi Mai," for example is a song you'll listen to over and over. It never gets old. But then there's "Metamorfosi," in which a woman howls and screams over the sound of slowly pounding drums.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Item arrived as described.
Published 1 month ago by evelineXXX
ZORN, John. The Big Gundown: John Zorn Plays the Music of Ennio Moricone. Nonesuch. 1986. JZ, arr and comp (track 9), alto sx, saw, harpsichord, p, voc; with a host of players,... Read more
Published 6 months ago by David Keymer
1.0 out of 5 stars Cacophonic
Caca most certainly but not music!
What a poor excuse for it.
This is nothing more than noise! Definitely my top ten worst buys! Read more
Published on January 17, 2012 by Brian H
5.0 out of 5 stars kudos to diamanda for metamorfosis!!!!!!
Kudos to Diamanda for her composition of the vocal tracks on Metamorfosis. It is extremely powerful, her work.
How did Zorn get her to do this? Read more
Published on July 2, 2010 by maria munoz
5.0 out of 5 stars Sheer Genius, Exciting, Beautiful, and Creative
Other reviewers have summed this album well enough that the only comment I'd like to add is that Zorn's version of "Poverty (Once Upon a Time in America)" is one of the most... Read more
Published on June 6, 2010 by T. Doherty
4.0 out of 5 stars Arrived safely ...but took some time :O)
Well packaged, everything in order but shouldn't have taken weeks to arrive overseas... (should not that the period in question includes xmas where mail slows down to a halt)
Published on February 5, 2010 by Ragnar Torfi Jonasson
3.0 out of 5 stars Obviously, works for some people, but not me
I bought this to fill out my "jazz core collection" as noted in The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings: Eighth Edition (Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings) (I'm working from both ends... Read more
Published on March 6, 2008 by Eric C. Sedensky
3.0 out of 5 stars Short of excellent, but certainly put this rampant experimenter on the...
3 1/2

Marking a noticeable evolution in this radical composer's one-of-a-kind-career, 1984's early breakthrough interpretations of the spaghetti western king proved a... Read more
Published on December 22, 2007 by IRate
3.0 out of 5 stars Lots of variety
John Zorn stepped away from his game piece albums and began to get into more conventional songs with "The Big Gundown". Read more
Published on June 9, 2007 by Anthony Cooper
5.0 out of 5 stars Definitely a must-have Zorn album!
I've got about 30 Zorn albums, and this was the first I heard, back in college late during an all-nighter. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. Fantastic stuff, and very weird. Read more
Published on April 26, 2004 by Douglas S. Benson
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