Rat Patrol Vol. 2/ Frontiere and North
June 7, 2014
LLLCD 1302 LIMITED EDITION OF 1200 UNITS
RAT PATROL OVERTURE
1966 was a busy year, my first full year in college and as a result I completely missed seeing this series when it came out. Over the years I may have seen an episode or two but we can say that this one is off the radar. When I received my review copy it grabbed my attention because of the two involved composers Frontiere and North both of which I was very familiar with. On the very first spin I wasn’t disappointed. I expected to hear a lot of war type material and while there is some of that it is also filled with African tribal material and some very romantic easy on the ear material. I like to call this type of material ‘sweet band’ the kind you can do a two step dance to.
There are three parts to this sixty-one minute CD: The original unused pilot material of Alex North, tracks 21-27, the source cues, and the used library material created by Frontiere specific to the series, tracks 1-20. One of the first twenty cues is a German number I’m very familiar with “Lily Marlene,” an often used song for source material. I’m sure that some of this music has been used over the years for other series, movies, and commercials but this writer has no clue where.
“The Rat Patrol Overture” starts the CD off which I’ve included as an audio clip is a trumpet oriented arrangement also featuring snare drum which definitely gives it a military feel. The theme is a catchy one which so many were in 60’s television. “The Germans on the Move” is a military march that must have been used when troops were on the move. “Before the War” is a sweet band arrangement that features a piano and accordion perfect for a nightclub setting. “After the War” and “In Love with a Rat” are also very similar in sound and style with plenty of accordion and piano. Mixed in are more danger cues of various styles adding tension or danger to the scene. Included on the CD is the propaganda song “Lili Marlene” that Hitler used and was later recorded by Marlene Dietrich and Connie Francis among others. “That Tiny World” is a typical sound from the singer Jack Jones which is offered on this CD in a sweet band style and also with strings.
Alex North wrote the music for the pilot episode “The Chase of Fire Raid” and the thirteen minutes of music made good use of his catchy main theme which served as a trombone solo, sax and piano, as well as military scenes. There are three source cues from Frontiere that conclude the CD repeats of previous tracks.
Informative liner notes are provided by noted writer Jon Burlingame. There is much history to be learned about the making of the television series. I found the sound to be a well balanced recording between the treble and the bass. No shrill or boom if you have good speakers.
Total Duration: 00:59:00