Various Easy Tempo, Volume 9

Rocco Pandiani and remix king Gak Sato dig ever deeper into the vaults of Italian soundtrack funk and crime jazz from the late '60s and early '70s with every release in the Right/Easy Tempo galaxy. And while their gleanings are as uneven as you'd expect, there's still a surprising wealth of super suave grooves in what they unearth. As with the Beat at Cinecitta series, Piero Umiliani and Piero Piccioni are probably over-represented, but their output was almost on a par with Indian soundtrack composers for being prolific. The real find, though, is Bill Conti's "Red Label," recorded about four years before he did the soundtrack for the first instalment of the Rocky franchise - it's classic and slinky, confident and understated in its sensuality. On the other end of this collection's spectrum is the outright cheesiness that has become the cliché of Italian B-movies and, no doubt, there are those who will seek out that fromage more than the sultry grooves, which are otherwise here in abundance. (Right Tempo)