Wim S. : Tommy Talamanca is an Italian guitar virtuoso, but in addition he is also keyboardist, songwriter, producer and engineer. Old metalheads among you might know him from the Italian death metal band Sadist with whom he made a few albums in the nineties. On this solo debut 'Na Zapad' we do not hear a traditional shredder at work, but rather a cross section of various musical styles, ranging from world music to jazz.
If you look at all the different instruments that Talamanca is playing, it is not surprising that you hear many Eastern melodies on this album. But there are also Southern European influences here and there. Tommy knows how to find a perfect balance between keyboards and guitar outbursts. There are no outliers on this CD. All the tracks are played perfectly (of course) and the production is clear. But after listening to it a couple of times, I cannot name a song that has stuck in my head. I guess that is because the songs are not easily accessible. There are no real 'songs' on this release; it is a more like background music for several different occasions: documentaries and film, theater, lift, etc. And I do not mean this to be negative. The only thing left to mention is that the only other musician we hear on this album is drummer Emiliano Olcese and that is a guy who knows how to handle his instrument. Nice album to listen to without stunning songs.