As one of the most enigmatic figures of the 1970’s Italian soundtrack and library music network Emma De Angelis and her short recording career provides thirsty fans of speedball psychedelic rock and drum heavy instrumental funk with a tight discography rivalling many of the long-standing bastions of the otherwise male-orientated business.
Born in Rocca di Papa, near Rome, into a flourishing musical environment Emma was the younger sister of future award-winning composers Guido And Maurizio De Angelis, a duo, who under names like Oliver Onions and Dream Bags, would write chart-topping lyrical theme tunes for a wide range of Italian crime, Giallo and Spaghetti Western films featured alongside full scores by Ennio Morricone and the Magnetic System composers (Bixio Frizzi Tempera).
With encouragement from her brothers, Emma, who would also write music under the pseudonym of Juniper, would record a tight clutch of solo-penned material and seldom credited studio contributions to Guido And Maurizio’s film commissions, such as the score for Giuliano Carnimeo’s Simone e Matteo: Un gioco da ragazzi (aka Convoy Buddies). While simultaneously pursuing a career as an illustrator and set designer the De Angelis family contacts would lead Emma to the offices of Romano Di Bari, whose up-and-coming Flirt label was finding success providing custom built mood music for use in TV and film. Alongside important composers like Alessandro Alessandroni, Gerardo Iacoucci and A. R. Luciani, the young Emma Di Angelis would record a small number of tracks for a compilation called Underground Mood (credited in the small print to E De Angelis – not to be confused with Italian singer Edoardo De Angelis). It is from this rare LP that the record you are now holding is compiled. Within the Flirt family of labels Emma De Angelis would also share schedules with other important female composers such as Daniela Casa and Giulia “Kema” De Mutiis – both of whom have appeared on dedicated Finders Keepers releases.
The tracks on this record provide us with a rare glimpse into Emma De Angelis’ short musical career before she became a full-time visual artist. With an unknown personnel or studio date it is easy to speculate a potential family jam in Piero Umiliani’s Sound Workshop studio in 1972. One only has to take a listen to Guido And Maurizio’s instrumental theme Gangster Story from Enzo G. Castellari’s 1973 thriller High Crime (which later appeared on Tarantino’s Death Proof soundtrack) or the trippy title theme to Paolo Poeti’s kinky 1976 drama Inhibition to spot the family resemblance.