March 08, 2005

Thomas Simon "Walkabout"

Thomas Simon decided to take a trip around the world. Thomas Simon also decided to preserve his trip on record, recording musicians in Nepal, India and Brazil. He recorded his exploits on film, and Walkabout is the soundtrack to that cinematic journey. Not being familiar with his previous work, his information says that he has a love of blending the tribal music of the world into one genreless style. I could see that, but it's not really obvious on Walkabout, which is straightforward world beat, with a little bit of fusion here and there. In a way, this reminds me a lot of the field recordings of Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart. Over the sixteen tracks, you'll experience all kinds of colorful sounds, from dark and brooding ("Walk About," "Somewhere Else") to bright and festive ("Rock Jog," "A Child's Smile") and all points in between. Occasionally Simon sings, and though I can see why he'd want to, I'm not so keen on those moments, as it seems to take away from the grandness of the record. Not a major complaint, mind you, but one that's worth noting. A pleasant, interesting journey through the world's overlooked nooks.

--Joseph Kyle

Label Website:

No comments: