Jeb Wright

The Troubs featuring Dave Dunlop & Rik Emmett – Recovery Room 9
Rockit Sounds
www.troubs.ca

Rating: B

Recorded live in the fall of 2011 at Room 9 in Toronto, Canada, Rik Emmett, the former guitarist for Triumph, and his Troubs sidekick Dave Dunlop whipped out nine covers, performed acoustically, in the studio. The album has a real live feel to it that makes it seem more like a live performance than a studio offering.

Emmett is one of the best The Great White North has ever produced. The years have been kind to him, as he still retains his unique vocal styling, while his guitar skills are better now than ever.

Always a talented acoustic player, Emmett shines on the Troubs rendition of the Police classic “Message in a Bottle” and the Don Henley classic “The Boys of Summer.” These are two of the finest songs played as each retains much of the original but still works very well unplugged. The Billy Joel song “Always a Woman” works great on guitar without the famed piano man’s input.

“I Hear you Knocking” and “Born to Run” are both interestingly done acoustically, however, they are not as strong as the aforementioned covers, or the awesome versions Emmett and Dunlop perform of the Beatles “I’ve Just Seen a Face” and John Hiatt’s “Have a Little Faith in Me.” The CD ends with a nod to the best comedy troupe from England, Monte Python, in the form of “The Galaxy Song.”

Anything Rik Emmett is involved with will be done with finesse, class and professionalism. He is a consummate performer and Dunlop is the perfect person to play with Rik. The duo obviously is having a great time paying homage to their peers. One would not necessarily know that from the album cover, as it appears both performers are nodding off into the darkness. Don’t be fooled by the photo though, as these guys put on a great, albeit, mellow acoustic set that showcases the softer side of Rik Emmett.

By Jeb Wright

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