Fear. Suspense. Shock. Disgust. Terror. These are some emotions you might experience while watching "Deep Red/Rosso Profondo," considered to be the quintessential Italian giallo (horror) film, centered around a murder mystery and drenched in gore. Directed by Dario Argento and released in 1975, the film's soundtrack was composed and performed by Claudio Simonetti and his band Goblin.
This Friday (Sept. 27) at 8 p.m. Taos Mesa Brewing has teamed up with Tone Deaf Touring, Dread Central and MetalSucks to bring Simonetti's Goblin to the Taos Community Auditorium, 145 Paseo del Pueblo Norte. Goblin will give a live performance of their original score to Argento's "Deep Red/Rosso Profondo."
The film will simultaneously be screened behind the musicians, with the musicians' silhouettes projected onto the bottom of the screen. Following the film, there will be a 20-minute intermission. For the second half of the show, Goblin will perform an additional set showcasing classic Goblin material and some new work.
In an interview with Tempo, Simonetti said that by the time Argento directed "Deep Red/Rosso Profondo," he had already made several films which had established him as a director on the cutting edge of giallo filmmaking. So back in the 1970s, when Argento approached Simonetti about composing the score for "Deep Red/Rosso Profondo," Simonetti was, well, thrilled.
Simonetti and Argento met shortly after Argento finished the filming for "Deep Red/Rosso Profondo." The producer working with Simonetti's band Goblin was the same one who was working with Argento to produce his films, and he introduced them.
Simonetti explained, "[Argento] was looking for a band that could write and play the music for this film. He called his producer and asked him if it would be possible to have a very important English band like Pink Floyd. Our producer said, 'OK, but before we call these famous bands, why don't you come hear these guys that I'm producing here in Rome.' So, [Argento] came into the studio and he liked our music a lot. So, that is how Argento decided to have us write the music for 'Deep Red/Rosso Profondo.'"
"I was a big fan of horror movies since I was a kid, and I knew very well of Argento because when we met him he was very famous, but I never supposed in my life to work with him. It was an incredible experience. And after 44 years we are here playing this music live. I never supposed I would do something like this. It's incredible," said Simonetti.
Following a successful 2018 tour in Europe and the United States, Simonetti and Goblin are now touring throughout North America presenting the soundtrack to Argento's "Deep Red/Rosso Profondo." The Goblin musicians on tour are Simonetti on keyboards, Bruno Previtali on guitar, Cecilia Nappo on bass and Federico Maragoni on drums.
Asked how audiences are responding to the live performance with the film, Simonetti said, "They love it because it's a beautiful experience to see a band playing the music live over the film. I play the original sound and original arrangement, I don't change anything from the original."
Jayson Wylie, president and director of brewing operations for Taos Mesa Brewing, said that Simonetti's Goblin has had a very successful tour so far.
"They've pretty much been selling out every market that they've been in," Wylie commented.
Wylie knows Goblin is a wickedly popular band in the European progressive (prog) rock scene.
"They tear it up. They're really tight. They do a really professional job entertaining people," Wylie said.
So, when Wylie was approached by Tone Deaf Touring about the Goblin/Deep Red package, he jumped on the chance. He said with Halloween around the corner, it seemed like a good time to bring this unusual experience to Taos.
Wylie said Taos is probably the smallest market on Goblin's tour. Some of the U.S. cities on this tour include Atlanta, Philadelphia, Los Angeles and Chicago, with Canadian cities including Vancouver, British Columbia and Montreal.
Simonetti has not been to Taos before, and he is looking forward to his visit here. The Taos show was possible because it was able to be scheduled between Goblin's performances in Tucson and Denver.
"Deep Red/Rosso Profondo" was the first soundtrack Simonetti composed. Since the 1970s, he has specialized in composing the scores of Italian and American horror films. Besides "Deep Red/Rosso Profondo" Simonetti has worked on several other films by director Argento, including "Suspiria," "Dawn of the Dead," "Tenebrae," "Phenomena," "Demoni" and "Opera."
Simonetti has also collaborated with directors Ruggero Deodato, Umberto Lenzi, Lucio Fulci, Enzo G. Castellari, Lamberto Bava and Sergio Martino.
Simonetti began his career by studying classical piano at the Conservatorio di Santa Cecilia in Rome. His father, who was a significant Italian musician, was also an influence on him. Simonetti is known for his experimental, electronic scores. The progressive rock keyboardist said he often uses the soprano voice and classical Italian stylings in his work.
Wylie said that film director Argento is compared to Alfred Hitchcock because he is brilliantly able to create a complete sensory experience of suspense, fear and horror through his cinematic effects.
"Claudio [Simonetti] is certainly a big part of that," said Wylie.
So, who will this experience appeal to? Wylie suggests it will have appeal for "any kind of film critic or film buff, any art indie house film person, horror folks, anybody into the goth community - anybody that really enjoys the prog rock of the '70s and '80s I think they would absolutely get a kick out of it as well. And, anybody that wants to get scared a little bit around Halloween time. We're a month out. It will get you into the spirit of Halloween."
Audiences should be forewarned: although "Deep Red" is considered a horror classic, Argento is known for not shying away from depictions of graphic violence, gore and brutality, some involving women.
For more information on Claudio Simonetti's Goblin visit the band on Facebook, facebook.com/goblinsimonetti.