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The Pat Travers Band-Boom Boom-Live At the Diamond 1990

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I confess to being aware of Pat Travers from his hit “Boom, Boom” just like everybody else. This DVD reveals more of his talent in a hard rock, fusion vein. I hear a lot of different styles from Travers and second guitar Jerry Riggs. To put a label on some of the sounds, I hear some Robin Trower, Jeff Beck, maybe some Ronnie Montrose, perhaps even some John McLaughlin.

But of course it’s just Pat Travers playing guitar in 1990.

Partner Jerry Riggs shares a lot of the solos, even takes the first one on “Snortin’ Whiskey.” I happened to stumble across an interview with Travers and he gives the origin of this song’s title. Supposedly a fellow band member (not one on this DVD) was a few hours late for practice and when he showed up they asked where he’d been. He said, “Snortin’ whiskey and drinkin’ cocaine.”

There are 14 songs on the DVD which was filmed in Toronto. Thankfully there are none of the quick cut, MTV style hand-held jittery camera shots. The camera actually stays on a musician for more than two seconds.

The band at that time consisted of Pat, Jerry Riggs on guitar, Peter “Mars” Cowling on bass, and Scott Zymowski on drums. They’re sounding well-rehearsed, hitting all the breaks right, and rocking hard. In fact that might be my only complaint about this disc. There seem to be no dynamics, or very little. Everything is full out, no quiet parts. Only occasionally is there some space left where there are no guitars filling up the sound. But I guess that is a matter of style.

Jerry Riggs looks a little bit dated with really long hair and the white pirate shirt. Was that really a look? No doubt he’s a great guitar player, but I grow tired of the pinch harmonics, natural harmonics, whammy dive-bombs which seem to say, “Hey, listen to these weird sounds.” Somehow they just seem like tricks.

I really don’t think Pat Travers ever got the popularity or notoriety he’s deserved, but he’s still around and has been regularly putting out CDs. “It Takes A Lot of Balls” is the title of a CD that came out last October with Pat playing with the legendary Carmen Appice and T.M. Stevens on bass. Travers still has loads of fans around the world and deservedly so.

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About Neal Gardner

  • http://home.comcast.net/~proy1/ Paul Roy

    I’ve been wanting to pick this one up since it came out, but it goes for about $25 which is a little steep for a roughly one hour concert. I saw Travers around the same time as this show at a small club in Florida, and he showed up about two hours late. He was pretty notorious for that and his weakness for coke. His performance was awesome, and I ended up seeing him a few years ago in a small club in Viginia. He was awesome then too. Travers reminds me a lot of Gary Moore. Very underated blues-rocker.

  • http://cherryred.co.uk/ Cherry Red

    Hi there,

    This month, Cherry Red Records is glad to release 3 Pat Travers CDs:

    – Radio Active : Criminally overlooked until now, this ‘lost’ classic album finally gains a long-overdue re-assessment and in so doing, gains a first-ever appearance on CD.

    – Black Pearl : Regarded by many fans as one of his finest albums, Black Pearl (1982) perfectly demonstrates why the Canadian born guitarist/vocalist also regards this release as a high water mark in his recording career.

    – Hot Shot : Originally released in April 1984, Hot Shot was to be the last studio album of the Eighties for the Canadian guitar maestro and as such, is the final instalment in our triplex of lost classic P.T. albums.

    Check out these releases at : Pat Travers re-issues. Feel free to contact us for more informations.

    Cheers,