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Pat Travers fires up Retro Rocket

Canadian guitar icon says he’s stripped back his sound on upcoming album

Canadian guitar icon Pat Travers says he’s stripped back his sound on his upcoming album Retro Rocket.

It’s set for launch on March 17 via Cleopatra and he reveals he took the decision as he wanted to capture the sound of the 70s.

He tells Classic Rock Revisited: “With Retro Rocket all I really did was just strip everything down. I had a ’57 Gold Top Les Paul and no effects, and I just played it all one time through. I did a couple of overdubs, but nothing major. I just tried to get that raw kind of feel that bands were doing in the 70s because they had to – there was no other way to record then. 

“More and more, I am using less and less of any kinds of effects on guitar. I am even using less guitar picks and I am playing my Fender Telecaster a lot more. I am into finding things on a simple guitar that sound great without having to sex them up to make them sound good." 

He continues: “A couple of weeks ago I got thinking about Paul Kossoff and Free. I went on YouTube and called up a bunch of their early live concerts. I think I have as much of a connection with him as I do with Jimi Hendrix – maybe even more so.”

Along with Retro Rocket, Travers has just released Live At The Iridium. It was recorded in New York in 2012 and he says it was his first comfortable performance in the city after many disappointing shows.

He continues: “I played in New York many times and I never seemed to have a good show. Something was always screwy or not right and something went wrong. When we played at the Iridium, the people were so nice and made us feel great. It is not a big place, but we had a full house, so it was a really comfortable situation.”

He’ll return to New York in April as part of a run of four US shows with his band: drummer Sandy Gennaro, guitarist Kirk McKim and bassist Rodney O’Quinn.

Retro Rocket tracklist

  1. I Always Run
  2. Searching For A Clue
  3. Who Ca You Turn To
  4. Up Is Down
  5. Mystery At The Wrecking Yard
  6. You Can’t Get Their From Hare
  7. I Am Alive
  8. I Wanna Be Free
  9. Hellbound Train
  10. Looking Up Live
  11. Lead Me Home (Theme From The Walking Dead)

Live At The Iridium tracklist

  1. Rock And Roll Susie
  2. Gettin’ Betta
  3. Crash And Burn
  4. Heat In The Street
  5. Josephine
  6. I’ve Got News For You
  7. Ask Me Baby
  8. I La, La, La Love You
  9. Lone Wolf/Red House
  10. If I Had Possession Over Judgement Day
  11. Spoonful
  12. Black Betty

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