As music can hit some pretty large chords, Soundcheck is a feature piece that spotlights today’s artists and their favourites, firsts and a few uncommon factoids. Edmonton, AB export TRAVIS BRETZER has recently evolved into a rising rock troubadour of sorts, with his penchant for hazy guitar pop leading him along the path of Cass McCombs, Chris Cohen and fellow Canadian Mac DeMarco. His new Making Love EP (avail now on Mexican Summer) bottles indie hues and wit so we got the 23-year-old to open up about his favourite Big Shiny Tunes comp, how Jesse and Heisenberg make him go ape shit, and that one time where he found his body rockin’ to a Flo Rida and Pitbull show.
The NHL Player That Would Portray Me In A Future Music Video.
Al MacInnis. He’s got a fast slapper.
My Personal Role Model.
Denzel Washington. He has the ability to transform drab source material into something very compelling. This is coming from someone who sat down and watched The Bone Collector. Also Roger Miller; he seems like a cool guy.
The Artist With The Greatest Discography Of All-Time.
Probably The Rolling Stones. Their longevity plays a big part in my decision but also their ability to “roll” with the punches. They’ve had their different phases but at the core of all their records they’ve got that familiar sound that makes em second to none (well except the Beatles hehe). You’d have to delete a serious amount of stuff on your computer to accommodate a torrent download of their discography. I’d also give an hon. mention to David Bowie.
The Most Underrated Musician Today.
I’m going to have to throw down The Virgins here – why the hell aren’t those guys conquering the world right now?
My Favourite Music Video.
Easy. Peter Gabriel’s “Sledgehammer”. My sister and I were watching Much More Music when we were little and it came on. Number two would be Crazy Town’s “Butterfly”.
The Best Big Shiny Tunes Compilation.
Number two! Chemical Brothers, Marilyn Manson, Prodigy. Shit will get your heart rate up.
My Favourite New Songs From This Year.
Chance The Rapper’s “Cocoa Butter Kisses” because it’s so damn beautiful. It just sways around and paints cute little pictures in your mind. Love all verses, nice and smooth like warm soda. For some reason the first thought I had on Dent May’s “Born Too Late” was that it sounded like Dent was channeling his inner RuPaul with the rhythm and synths. With a lot of his songs I find the verse itself is a hook, and the hook is a mega hook, and the instrumental breaks are baby hooks. Being a fan of hooks, his music makes me happy. There’s also something freaky going on with Kurt Vile’s “Never Run Away”. It’s shiny and polished, and spooky and nostalgic, and confusing all at the same time. I really dig the chorus a lot. The way he says “a-way” – it’ll get ya’.
The Greatest Show On Television.
Breaking Bad makes me go ape shit. I get so emotional with that show, I’m sweating just thinking about the finale.
The Best Album Released By Mexican Summer To Date.
My personal favourite would be The Soft Pack’s self titled. It’s a lively rocking record with sage advice and quality songs. I can’t really ask for more, every song is a banger on this one.
The Dumbest Thing I’ve Purchased In The Past Year.
A $14 dollar slush drink at Caesar’s Palace. I still feel regret to this day.
Three Things I Have To Have On My Tour Rider.
The weirdest one would have to be Pitbull with Flo Rida opening. It somehow took the energy of a hall show and spread it out into 10,000-plus seat arena. I felt compelled to dance. The show made my body move in ways it has never moved before.
The One Song That Defines My Life And Who I Am.
“The Old Gray Mare”. It’s a song that describes a horse not being as lively as it used to be. I identify with that damn horse. It’s essentially Bruce Springsteen’s “Glory Days” but with a horse. Good song.