The release of Silent Town closes the trilogy of social and political commentary that began with Talco’s previous releases La Cretina Comedia and Gran Galà. Following the release of Silent Town in Europe last November, the Italian ska punk six-piece were looking set to become one of the leading ska punk bands in the world, and this all happened before the album dropped in the UK. The language barrier doesn’t hold them back – it’s difficult not to be hooked by their fun blend of fast-paced ska punk and folk music, regardless of whether or not you understand the lyrics.
It’s important to mention that the concept album vocalises political issues and a global decline in culture and historical memory which would remain hidden if you don’t understand the lyrics and only hear their upbeat ska sound. Lyrics aside, opening track ‘Il Tempo’ is an immediate insight into Talco’s fun and nimble nature. Combining a chorus of enthralled voices with upbeat brass instrumentals and riffs creates a track brimming with an infectious energy that stays by your side throughout the entire play through of the album. Even the closing track ‘Malandia’ is pulsing with the ardour that has been built up by the joy of the previous eleven tracks.
With the exception of ‘Ovunque’, the rest of the tracks are consistently upbeat and sprightly. The melody is much slower and as a result the track has a sombre and slightly bleak feel to it. The title track, ‘Silent Town’, along with ‘Nella Strada’ demonstrate the complementary pairing of Dema’s empowering vocals with Rizia’s jubilant sounding trumpet parts – it’s really invigorating to listen to and leaves you feeling nothing but elated.
Silent Town is a must for fans of ska punk. However, it’s a shame that we can’t explore the lyrical side of the album more. Granted, lyrics aren’t everything – but for a concept album such as this they are quite important to pay attention to and acknowledge. Don’t let the language barrier discourage you though! If you’re into Less Than Jake, The Mighty Bosstones or Catch 22 and you’re eager to listen to something a bit different, then Silent Town is well worth a listen.