Walter Trout – Alive In Amsterdam

Walter Trout – Alive In Amsterdam 
Provogue – PRD-7492-3
Perhaps the toughest aspect of Walter Trout’s brush with death and long road to recovery was being able to get back to unleashing his musical passions from stages across the globe. Walter has always been a consummate road warrior, playing numerous dates every year in stages ranging from tiny clubs to massive festivals. “Alive In Amsterdam,” recorded on his first tour after his recovery in one of his favorite stomping grounds sounds like he has not lost any of his energy or passion as he absolutely lights the stage on fire. His long set…enough to fill two discs is laden with songs from his first post-recovery recording “Battle Scars,” as well as favorites from deep into his catalogue. While he really tears loose from the start with rockers like “Help Me” and “I’m Back,” you really get drawn fully in with the searing ballad “Say Goodbye To The Blues” where Walter tributes the late B.B.King. The “King” gets a further tribute with a wild version of “Rick Me Baby” featuring Walter dueling with his son Jon, an obviously talented protege. Walter’s back-up band of bassist Johnny Griparic, keyboardist Sammy Avila, and drummer Michael Leasure are as red hot as ever, with extra flavor added to a couple songs by former Sleeze Beez/The Moon vocalist Andrew Elt. When the final strains of “The Love That We Once New” fade into the Amsterdam night, it seems to fall a bit short to merely say that Walter Trout is back. It’s like he never left, was never near death, and was not lying in the hospital too weak to move sometimes. He did go, however, through those experiences, channeled it into his music, reminding us all again of what the blues are all about. Walter Trout has lived and breathed it more then many people have, and when he picks up his guitar, steps to the mic, and tells us all about it, look out!  – MW


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