Artist: Pat Travers 
   Title: Can Do
   Label: Frontiers Records
 

On mentioning that Pat Travers has a new album out, the response was ... 'Hell, is he still on the go!!'.  Charming or what! Well, he is definitely 'on the go' if this album is anything to go by, because he certainly sounds like he means business once Mr. Travers begins to sing.  The band come out with all the balls a-blasting on the VERY hard, roaring guitar title track, Travers himself sounding like he's ready to tear the place apart in a fit of anger, such is the growl in his voice, but the funked up 'Stand up / Give it up' eases that 'will he, won't he' train of thought as he throws blues licks out one after another seemingly for fun when you hear them.

Known for his blues tendencies, mainly in the 90's, Travers and his band seem to revel in the way they flounce through the funky/blues-riddled 'Dust and Bone', the hooks not a million miles away from Aerosmith's 'Rag Doll' on first impressions, and beware, because you will not be able to stay still once you get into the song, it's as catchy as a dose of cold at an O.A.P. bingo session during December! You want to bop?? My God, are you going to go for it when 'Red Neck Boogie' hits your eardrums! This keyboard-fused, racing solo exhibition of a song has all the trademarks of a band really enjoying themselves as they go for broke from the top, breaking into Dr. Feelgood territory at times, but not as serious sounding at the same time, and definitely one to let your hair down to when played live.  (Yeah, right!!).

The band, who incidentally are the same line-up used on the 2010 album 'Fidelis', show a more subtle side on the radio-friendly 'Diamond Girl', it's lovely echoey riffs and solo working in harmony with Travers' still gruff though held back vocals, and also on 'Keep Calm & Carry On', where the pace changes for a laid back, soaring six-stringed solo-fest of magical proportions, Travers showing us all why he's still one of the best out there these days, and will still be for many more years to come. Captivating and utterly brilliant is the only way to describe the track, and shows that there's plenty of life still left in 'the old dog' yet!

Reading between the lines, 'Wanted (That Was Then/This Is Now) sounds like a man looking over the life he led in his younger, tear-away days when nothing seemed to impossible, and with the slowed pace of the song full of emotion, then it all makes sense if Travers is in fact telling the story of a bad time during his career, and all along with some methodic military-sounding drum-work, this is one very imposing song on the album. Another stand-out track is a strange choice, yet a well done cover of the 1984 Eurythmics hit 'Here Comes The Rain Again' brilliantly stripped down to an acoustic-led affair, with the tenderest touches on the electric for Travers own personality to shine through. His voice actually suits this cover more than you'd think, and with the backing vocals from Monica Travers playing their part just as importantly, you can't knock the song in any way no matter what you think of the initial choice.

Still, the man is never happier than when he's blasting out those rough 'n ready rockers, and with the gruff vocaled 'Armed And Dangerous', he's chewing at the bit on each note on the guitar, so you could say it's a case of 'home is where the heart is', and with this album it is a warm welcome home too.

'Can Do' shows a band and it's frontman bang on form in 2013 with plenty to offer their fans, so any those going to see them live this time round, well, you'll find out that, YES, the man Is still on the go and all the better for it!!

Review by: Robb Baldwin

 Tracklisting:

1. Can Do
2. Stand Up / Give It Up
3. Diamond Girl
4. As Long As I'm With You
5. Long Time Gone
6. Wanted (That Was Then / This Is Now)
7. Armed And Dangerous
8. Here Comes The Rain Again
9. Keep Calm And Carry On
10. Dust And Bone
11. Waitin' On The End Of Time
12. Red Neck Boogie

                  

 

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