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Category:    Home > Reviews > Action > World War II > Horror > TV > Soundtrack > Jericho/The Ghostbreaker (Limited CD)

Jericho/The Ghostbreaker (Limited Edition CD Soundtracks)


Sound: B-     Music: B



The music archive of classic television is the most underrated and underestimated of all and Film Score Monthly’s FSM label has been occasionally accessing those types of archives, revealing music that is rarely acknowledged.  This time, they offer a double feature of the short-lived war action TV series Jericho (1966) and television movie pilot The Ghostbreaker (1965).  The series only lasted 16 episodes, with only 11 making it on the air.  The telefilm was a Horror/Supernatural genre work that barely was shown, yet was a few years ahead of Night Gallery and Kolchak: The Night Stalker.


Morton Stevens, Jerry Goldsmith, Lalo Schifrin, Robert Drasnin, Richard Shores and Gerald Fried all contributed to Jericho, which has actually found itself on the air on occasion thanks to the Turner Networks.  Now immensely successful director Richard Donner helmed the pilot show and after hearing all this scoring, Warner ought to consider putting out on TV down the line as part of some cult TV showcase.  The composers were also working on shows like The Man From U.N.C.L.E. and all were more than up to speed to deal with the grid of action series TV.  Unfortunately, CBS badly scheduled the show and it did not get the chance it could have, though shows set in World War II were hits at the time.


The Ghostbreaker was only shown once and remarkably forgotten.  With a cast that included Kerwin Matthews, Norman (Mr. Roper from Three’s Company) Fell, Diana van der Vlis, Richard Anderson, Orson Bean, Kevin McCarthy, Larry Blyden, Anne Jeffreys, Michael Constantine, Richard Bey and Margaret Hamilton.  That it has been in the vault al these years is insane, but that it has a score by John Williams is the last straw.  Fortunately, FSM has finally unearthed the music score and it is one of his best early scores.  The theme song is playful without being juvenile, while other scoring literally is of the kind that builds suspense, unlike what we usually get now.


The combination on a single CD is a strong showing, beyond its diverse nature.  It is amazing such great genre music has gone unheard for 40 years, but its FSM to the rescue.  Both scores come from ¼” magnetic mono masters, carefully and nicely transferred for this limited edition release.  If you are interested in picking up one of the only 3,000 copies that have been pressed, you can go to listen to select sound clips right now at www.filmscoremonthly.com and read more about the content and history of both scores.  It also comes with the usually text and photo rich booklets that make these CDs the gold standard for soundtrack releases.  Act fast though, because if your PC can stream music, you will hear why this is a key FSM release and soundtrack music lovers will want to get this one.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


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