Trataka – Live To Ride – Ride To Live (EP Review)

IMG_8408First song on this is the title track – which kicks off with what sounds like the idling growl of a Harley. And although I have a fondess for Honda’s – that’s aok to me. Lots of bike related lyrics here which evoke images of cruising down a highway and being free – completed by a catchy chorus and a solid guitar riff.  Listen out for the slashing solo by Teek Camillo – a ripping left handed guitarist who has a wealth of experience and it shows. I saw a photo of Teek sporting what looked like one of those Paul Stanley Ibanez signature models which are very nice looking guitars. There’s an early 1980’s hard rock flavour to the title track which suits folks like us, just fine. But in saying that – it shows a lot of broad appeal and with a thicker production, could be killer. I dig it. I note that friend of the show Steve Mulry has had a jam with these guys at a bike show a while back – which would’ve been something special to witness– not sure if there’s video footage of that online – let us know if there is, cos I’d like to see that. Steve of course is an amazing rock vocalist  who we had on the show back on episode 17 btw.

Second track is the aforementioned Liar – the tune which – as I mentioned earlier – we cranked on a recent show. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – if I’m hooked 10 seconds in, I know that’s it’s a great rock song  – and Liar is indeed just that. Let me re-iterate what I said on the podcast about this one…. Infectious chorus – stinging guitars – catchy as all hell – the intro sounded a little like the 1983 Kiss track Exciter which sounds fine to these ears.

Trataka Vocalist Donna and the aforementioned Tony ‘Teek’ Camillo previously did time in an outfit called Two To Tango – and before that were in outfits such as VICIOUS CYCLE and AGONY ECSTASY . I read online that Donna has previously worked alongside the likes of ICEHOUSE and GLEN SHORROCK … of course this makes me wonder if the ripping guitarist on this release ‘Teek’ ever tried his hand on the Sydney circuit back in the day ? But I digress….

Any track which kicks off with a bass run and some slashing guitar always sounds good to these ears . Case in point is the third and final track on the EP – ‘Man In Black’. That bass is courtesy of Lee Stanton btw, and his rhythm partner on this release is a guy called JC.  Donna’s vocals are not as abrasive on this tune – and I reckon Man In Black – after a few listens – may even be my pick of the bunch. Yep, the hard rock trappings are evident – but it’s got a sweet chorus and commercial appeal. Again, real melodic guitar solo from a guy with tons of talent. Listen out at the two and a half minute mark when the band lift the song up a gear – cos it’s really effective.

Live To Ride – Ride To Live – folks, that’s an attitude I wholeheartedly endorse.  It’s also the title of this EP which shows a lot of promise – and is very very solid.

Trataka – like many other bands – are one which are deserving of far more attention. To get work and to make ends meet they do a lot of cover work – hopefully they can find time in the future to pen an album’s worth of original tunes which they could leverage off this EP – because as I mentioned earlier – they have a good, solid sound and a lot of promise. The word Trāṭaka I believe is a method of meditation – and although I didn’t do any of that – I did focus on the three tracks on this EP with my rock n roll ears and I sure as hell ain’t psychic – but I predict a damn fine follow–up to this is what’s required.

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