Paul Batto is a songwriter who says to be influenced by John Lee Hooker, Mahalia Jackson and Frank Sinatra. That already is an unlikely combination for someone who interprets country blues in a personal way, but this entirely American sounding singer-songwriter was born in Ljubjana, Slovenia too.
That he turned into to a travelling blues musician, was no so logical: the guitar that he got when he was five years old, stood untouched in a corner for seven years.
Meanwhile he has already travelled Europe for twenty years and he plays wherever he can. His gigs must be impressive, because his playing and singing sound just as sparse as committed in the eleven songs on his new album. For conjuring up a lot of ambiance Batto needs no more than a good melody, an acoustic guitar and his voice.
His melodies stick in your memory without exception and his guitar playing is diverse in style. Batto especially feels at home in the South of the US, but also absorbs influences from Spain and India. His acoustic and slide guitar sound emotional continuously in the first place, while his vocal does not only add a melody to his playing, but also a lot of intensity.
Batto proves that he can reach maximum results with minimal means, because not only does every song form a logical whole, his inspiration is also clear every time. That way he convincingly evokes a world of endless roads, which indeed are lonely sometimes, but maybe yield many beautiful songs just because of that.