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Wish Key ‎- Orient Express / Last Summer 12″ EP


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Wish Key was an Italo Disco group formed by the husband/wife duo of Manlio Cangelli and Lorella Ghilardi in Milan.Their first single “Orient Express” was released in 1983 by Discomagic Records. The song was arranged, composed and recorded by Manlio, with the lyrics by Lorella. It was supposed to be the new single for Blue Russell, but on the insistence of Severo Lombardoni of Discomagic Records, the group was persuaded to use a male vocalist. A demo of the song was given to DJ Massimo Berti, who contributed lead vocals, while the backing vocals were done by Blue Russell. The subsequent promotion of the song demanded finding an alternate female vocalist because Blue Russell was already committed to the promotion of her own single, “I Wanna Fly Away”. Silvia Merelli, Berti’s wife, was brought in for TV appearances and future recordings. In 1985 Massimo Berti began recording another single for the Wish Key project. “Last Summer” was recorded with help from Italo producer Sandy Dian. “Orient Express” begins with a rolling baseline, bright synthesizer stabs, and a sampled train siren. The double-tracked male/female vocals compliment each other perfectly, heightening the dramatic tension. Massimo sings about taking a train ride as a metaphor for traveling through life’s adventures. The song is accompanied by a shorter instrumental edit with an extended intro. On the flip is “Last Summer”, a slower paced affair with Silvia recalling a dream of lying on the beach and having a good time. The breakdown introduces synthesized steel drums and Spanish guitar, for a touch of tropical melancholia. All songs have been remastered for vinyl by George Horn at Fantasy Studios in Berkeley. The vinyl comes housed in a jacket with original artwork of a train shuffling through the desert by Adriano Merigo. Each copy includes 2-sided postcard with lyrics, photos and notes designed by Eloise Leigh.

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