Marco Tansini - 'Blues Garage'

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Marco Tansini - 'Blues Garage'

If you like blues, you're sure to like the material.

The reviews editor wasn't necessarily aware of this, but while I don't mind blues music, what I'm not really a fan of is instrumental albums. The odd instrumental included on an otherwise vocal album is fine. But ten songs of nothing but music? Unlikely to be my thing.

Nevertheless, a review assignment is a review assignment, so I was quite prepared to give Italian guitarist Marco Tansini a chance, with this, his second album. As soon as the opening number started, I became very aware that not only was this a fully fledged blues album, it was also superbly produced and played with real skill and conviction.

Fronting a four-piece band of drums, bass, Hammond and his own guitar, Marco and his album take you on a journey of well crafted, but ultimately less than memorable blues tunes. All are performed to a very high quality, but I had a problem identifying each track readily - a problem caused by the lack of a lyric or vocal and compounded by the fact that each song, with the exception of the title track, is simply named after a colour. Yes, we have 'Brown', 'Yellow' and 'Green', not forgetting 'White' and naturally 'Black'. The press release claims it is because the album is "a journey into the blues and all of it's shades", but I just found it hard to figure out where I was.

For instance, the lively number with the great bass line and the little bit of rock riffing in the break became my favourite, but I had to skip back and count the tracks to figure out it was 'Orange'. That problem aside, I'm a bit confused about how to sum up the album. Is the music on it good? Undoubtedly. Did I like it? Yes, I suppose I did. Would I buy it? Probably not, because I found it was best heard while I was working - it's a brilliant background music album in my view, but I don't go out of my way to buy albums for background noise. It would be superb on the soundtrack for a film set in a bar, like the Patrick Swayze film 'Roadhouse' - but they had the Jeff Healey band instead.

I can't fault Marco's work here, but I can't say I was inspired to urge others to get a copy. If you like blues, you're sure to like the material, but it's blues in the blues style, so you can already make a fair guess of what it sounds like. Whether you want ten instrumental blues songs from Marco is your call, not mine.

James Gaden

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