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splendid > reviews > 11/5/2002
The Suntanama
The Suntanama
Self-Titled
Drag City


Format Reviewed: CD

Soundclip: "Sunset Samagain"

Buy me now
Before getting involved with this record you'll need to ask yourself how much bluesy classic rock you feel like listening to. If the answer is "not very much", you might want to skip ahead to the T's and U's at the record store, because this is not for you. If the answer is "a lot" (and is followed by "turn it up, dude"), you're going to be pretty high on the Suntanama.

The Suntanama sounds like it piled into its van 30 years ago on the way to a gig, got lost on the way, and is just getting to the show now. In the band's world-gone-by, the biggest stars are Joe Cocker and the Allman Brothers Band, and on this record it drives out of its way to ride those acts' coat-tails.

The record's production is sort of crowded, and doesn't seem to want to highlight any specific effort by the quintet backing singer Darren Zoltowski. Zoltowski clearly had enough to drink before laying the tracks, as it's often impossible to figure out a word he's saying. Even so, the performances are loose, jammy and spare enough to help minimize some of the clutter.

In the final analysis, the Suntanama have created a feel-good record that will keep the good times rolling and the bourbon flowing in low bars across the nation.



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