Tracer: El Pistolero

Classic Rock’s Best New Band 2012 deliver on their promise.

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From the rugged, winter blues‐free bowels of Australia, Tracer’s part‐biker, part‐stoner, part‐dirty Desperado‐evoking rock’n’roll formula hath cometh in full on their second LP.

It’s wonderful how a record can sound so heavy and sweaty, but still retain a fundamentally sunny soul. The QOTSA‐esque stomp and fuzz of Manic For Ya is fresh and gritty, while Dead Garden blends contemporary rock with delicious licks… all damn enjoyable.

One of the most appealing aspects throughout is Tracer’s capacity for simple, but not ‘stoopid’, rock’n’roll — aided by gorgeous production from Bonamassa/ Slayer/ Zeppelin man Kevin Shirley. Yes, they deal heavily in cheery macho abandon, but it doesn’t mask the original thinking at work — Hangman excels particularly, sliding from atmospheric strings to monstrously satisfying chorus hook.

Ultimately, what could have been just another well‐meaning rawk’n’roll romp has materialised as something far more sophisticated and interesting. High‐calibre fun.

Polly Glass
Deputy Editor, Classic Rock

Polly is deputy editor at Classic Rock magazine, where she writes and commissions regular pieces and longer reads (including new band coverage), and has interviewed rock's biggest and newest names. She also contributes to Louder, Prog and Metal Hammer and talks about songs on the 20 Minute Club podcast. Elsewhere she's had work published in The Musician, delicious. magazine and others, and written biographies for various album campaigns. In a previous life as a women's magazine junior she interviewed Tracey Emin and Lily James – and wangled Rival Sons into the arts pages. In her spare time she writes fiction and cooks.