Untango (2007)

take a listen – hear an audio preview:

“Untango” (or, “Untangle”, as implied) is the main theme from the upcoming film “Serpent’s Breath”, written and directed by Michael P. DiPaolo. In the film, four relationships are intertwined and shattered over one weekend, reaching towards a shocking climax.

The film’s gritty urban tone and dark subject matter made it a natural fit for a tango-influenced score — but the world of tango was somewhat alien to my own. Having spent the recent years composing and arranging music more in the Eastern European / Persian / Asian and Indian styles, I tried to create a tango sound which would somehow reflect my recent pursuits.

To me, the main melody has a very Indian line, and the accompanying figure in the viola is very Arabic; the piano line is a transfigured version of a Cuban “son montuno” riff (which is running in 6/4 against a general 12/8 feel), while the bass and percussion play primarily in jazz-ballad feel.

“Untango” is dedicated to my mentor Osvaldo Golijov, whose scores are of an immense inspiration, particularly in their heartfelt personality and painstaking attention to detail.

CATEGORY Chamber Music, Ljova and the Kontraband, lead sheet, world music, jazz, tango, film soundtrack
INSTRUMENTATION accordion, viola, piano, bass, percussion
DURATION 7 minutes 50 seconds
WORLD PREMIERE June 1, 2007 – Brooklyn Academy of Music (part of the Sundance@BAM Film Festival)
WORLD PREMIERE PERFORMERS Patrick Farrell, accordion; Ljova, viola; Uli Geissendoerfer, piano; Mike Savino, bass; Mathias Kunzli, percussion
RECORDING Recorded on Ljova and the Kontraband’s debut CD, “Mnemosyne”, with special guest accordionist William Schimmel. [album details]
SCORE AVAILABILITY All arrangements are available for sale via PDF or mail delivery; arrangements for combinations not listed above may be commissioned on request. [contact for more info]

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