Gil Talmi

" Soft lovely melodies dominate the score from start to finish "

Written by Thomas Glorieux - Review of the download only release

Composer Gil Talmi isn't a household name YET, but the Emmy nominated composer has been active these last 10 years writing music for numerous documentaries and independent films. One of the movies that could change all that is Savannah, an independent film starring Jim Caviezel and Chiwetel Ejiofor (looking awfully similar in look with Ejiofor's other film 12 Years a Slave, at least in placement and time). Anyway, for Savannah, Talmi was able to work with an union Los Angeles orchestra and various known instrumentalists (George Doering on guitar and Chris Bleth on woodwinds). Talmi himself performs the piano and his skill already shows real promise in the opening track of this release.

Think of relaxing beauty and rich emotional melodies, that's "We Shape Everything". A really lovely opening track that shows us already a delicate sophistication. And besides, true Rachel Portman fans will happily discover it holds the same easy going thematic progressions of Portman's known style. And Talmi doesn't change a lot after that. Savannah continues to bring moving, delicate piano performances, often brightened by the soft strings and meandering woodwinds that stand no doubt for the tranquilizing beauty of Savannah, Georgia. Though reminding me rarely of various scores such as Forrest Gump (equally taking place in Savannah) due to the guitar led rhythms in the track "At First Sight", the meandering string led theme of The Thin Red Line mimicking "Journey to the Line" in "A Painful Past" or the Scent of a Woman inspired pieces "Floating on a Sea of Stars" and "15 Paces", Savannah holds the similarities down to a minimum.

A change of pace turns up occasionally as well in more lighthearted pieces such as "Kindred Spirits" and "Scallion Jack", but all in all, Savannah continues to deliver these soft meandering tracks, often highlighting the delicate riches of the Savannah marsh lands, or the deep meaningful friendship between the 2 lead actors. And when the emotion takes the upper hand, we receive these spine tingling results such as "The Pen, Opus 1", "Losing Lucy", "Time and Tide" and the amazing duo "So Be It" and "There Is Some Meaning in It" (the latter holding the finest and most spine chilling performance of the main theme).

If we ever hear more of composer Gil Talmi, Savannah will be seen in time as the composer's breakthrough score of his career. It's a lovely work and listens extremely relaxing and deeply meaningful. But that's perhaps the problem too. This can easily function as a background score, and then perhaps it's easy to lose yourself in it as well. Simply because it will pass you by easier than you might like (save for the amazing final tracks). For the moment it's only available as download, but there are definitely tracks here that will please the Rachel Portman fans, simply because it features the same easy to like main theme that haunts the entire score from start to finish.

Favorite Moment - There Is Some Meaning in It (1.49 - 2.33)
The main theme gets its most bone chilling performance here

Track Listing

1. We Shape Everything (3.10) Excellent track
2. Love, in the Making (2.20)
3. At First Sight (1.46)
4. Kindred Spirits (2.21)
5. Floating on a Sea of Stars (3.32)
6. A Way of Life (1.20)
7. What Would You Have Me Do? (1.27)
8. It Will Be Our Secret (0.48)
9. Your World Ain't Mine (1.57)
10. Solitude (2.50)
11. The Gift (0.52)
12. The Pen, Opus 1 (1.43)
13. The Pen, Opus 2 (1.41)
14. Scallion Jack (2.04)
15. 15 Paces (1.23)
16. What If It's a Girl? (1.08)
17. Broken (2.11)
18. Losing Lucy (4.37)
19. A Painful Past (2.06)
20. Resistance (1.01)
21. Time and Tide (2.54)
22. So Be It (3.56) Excellent track
23. There Is Some Meaning in It (3.32) Excellent track
24. A Painful Past (featuring Chiwetel Ejiofor) (2.07)

Total Length: 52.46
(click to rate this score)  
(total of 8 votes - average 4.19/5)

Released by

Konsonant Records B00EO8AXME (download only release 2013)

Orchestrations by

Richard Bronskill & Gil Talmi