On the radar: Chantel McGregor

Some of us are just destined to play guitar. The family of Bradford-based guitarist Chantel McGregor suspected as much when she started tapping out tunes as a toddler.

"I think it was my dad's influence," she tells us. "He always used to play guitar, so when I was three I would grab the guitar and de-tune it and probably put copious amounts of dinks in it, so he got me a half-size, and it went from there."

I wanted to incorporate that swampiness, with all the textures for the guitar

From that point on, Chantel's life was music and she's since won two British Blues Awards for 'guitarist of the year' in 2013 and '14 respectively. However, second album Lose Control tones down the blues sound and notches up the modern rock production.

Prog on

"I went in with a concept," reflects Chantel. "Lyrically, it's darker and deeper than the first one, which was really just a collection of songs. This one's looking at the Southern Gothic theme, so there are a lot of themes of guilt and death."

Making full use of the studio environment, Chantel channelled tones via her Music Man JP6 electric and a Carvin Legacy 3 amp, and says she's now become obsessed with 'textures'.

"The last song [Walk On Land] is this epic prog song," she says. "I wanted to incorporate that swampiness, with all the textures for the guitar. I might just call the next album that. If I write one called 'Textures' then I can be proper prog… or 'Textures Of A Moonscape'!" Put TG down for a pre-order.

  • For fans of: Rival Sons
  • Hear: Lose Control

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Matt Parker

Matt is a freelance journalist who has spent the last decade interviewing musicians for the likes of Total Guitar, Guitarist, Guitar World, MusicRadar, NME.com, DJ Mag and Electronic Sound. In 2020, he launched CreativeMoney.co.uk, which aims to share the ideas that make creative lifestyles more sustainable. He plays guitar, but should not be allowed near your delay pedals.