Pat Thomi is a blistering guitarist who recorded with such acts as Jean-Luc Ponty and Gino Vanelli in the 1980s.
Pat Thomi is a blistering guitarist who recorded with such acts as Jean-Luc Ponty and Gino Vanelli in the 1980s. But the Swiss-born musician also has a more contemplative side that's heard on Pyramids. Inspired more by the mood and mysticism than the music of Egypt, Thomi improvises five long tone poems. Each one emerges like an Indian alap, with wind-swept dunes of synth padding upon which Thomi unravels long guitar solos, usually on a very acoustic-sounding electric guitar (and on the title track, electric sitar). "Dunes" features an intricate improvisation that glides over a galloping rhythm loop. "Time" is the most dramatic piece: After a languid opening that's typical of the album, Thomi launches another rhythm loop, with sampled string bass that powers a cinematic guitar solo. Thomi brings deft soloing and sensitive sound design to a genre often bereft of those traits. Contact 310-313-4306.—JD