Never has the brooding piano theme to The Beyond ever felt more forboding than when experienced live.
Photo of Frizzi and band at the San Diego show by Emilie Black of EmyBPhoto.
When it comes to horror --- specifically weird Italian horror --- Fabio Frizzi is a household name, nearly synonymous with the director of the films he's best known for scoring --- Lucio Fulci.
Last Tuesday night, several of the horror faithful trekked "off campus" (meaning we left Fantastic Fest happening at the Alamo Drafthouse on South Lamar Blvd.) to go see Frizzi and his ridiculously talented band play the live score to Fulci's seminal masterpiece of horror, existentialism, and sorrow --- The Beyond.
One of the most fun parts of this screening and live performance was seeing it all go down in an actual church --- the Central Presbyterian Church in downtown Austin. Red lights pointed towards the vaulted ceiling in a decidely Satanic nod all around the pews, which were outfitted with plush red velvet cushions. Strangely, no one within the church spontaneously combusted.
Never has the brooding piano theme to The Beyond ever felt more forboding than when seen and felt live. It's just something you have to experience --- and when those macabre, minor notes hit home as Catriona MacColl and David Warbeck are running and trying to find a way out of their living nightmare, just try to stop the hair from raising on your arms and neck.
The Beyond does take place within one of the seven doors to Hell, after all. Who better than maestro Fabio Frizzi to compose the theme? This is a horror film based in New Orleans about ressurecting malevolent souls from within the netherworld, after all.
The crowd --- of course --- knew that they were experiencing a rarity, and we all stood and gave Frizzi and company several rounds of enthusiastic applause. There were a few rounds of standing ovations, as well. It was a surprise to the crowd, but after The Beyond ended, we were treated to an encore set. Frizzi and his band (he even had an opera singer!) played a suite from Fulci's weirdo New York-based grindhouse film Manhattan Baby, along with his revised score for Lamberto Bava’s Devil Fish.
It was a fun evening that seemed to end far too early, but you take what you can get. Here's hoping that Frizzi will continue to tour --- and score more films --- in the future.
Upcoming shows on the 2016 Frizz 2 Fulci tour are October 4th in Seattle and October 6th in Chicago. Try to check them out live if you can!