Boomkat Product Review:
This new project is spearheaded by Alessandro Steffana, whose solo debut Poste E Telegrafi was released a couple of years ago on Important, leading to collaborations with Marc Ribot and Mike Patton. For this album he recruits from unexpected sources: Alessandro Alessandroni (the man who does the whistling on Ennio Morricone soundtracks) is present, as is italian singer Bobby Solo, former Jeff Buckley guitarist Gary Lucas, and Chris Speed a clarinetist whose credits include John Zorn, Tim Berne and Uri Caine. The spaghetti western theme runs deeply through this record, channelling the mariachi stylings of Calexico, soundtracks to films like The Great Silence, and that scene in From Dusk Till Dawn where Salma Hayek dances about with a snake. 'El Divino' is especially of note, slowly swaying with grand, filmic strings while Alessandroni whistles along. Even without his presence this piece would be borderline Morricone copyism, but with him on board it feels far more like a knowing homage. Along the way you'll encounter twangin' psychedelic bluegrass ('Bull Buster') chipper country tunes ('Tromp Valley') and heart-wrenching orchestration in the vein of Nick Cave and Warren Ellis' soundtrack work ('Danny Boy'). Lots to admire and enjoy here. Recommended.