Renaud Louis-Servais interview – Epic Circus album

Renaud Louis-Servais is one of the very best Fusion guitar player we have in France. He hast just released a new album called Epic Circus where he collaborated with none other than keyboard player Philippe Saisse and drummer Virgil Donati. Not bad, huh! It was a pleasure to do an interview in English with him to expose him to more people.

Renaud website:

Subject discussed in the interview

  • His first guitar
  • How he became the Fusion guitar he is now
  • What was the idea behind this new album Epic Circus
  • The details about the collaboration with Virgil Donati and Philippe Saisse
  • Next projects

Album review

Let me say right away that I think that Epic Circus is an awesome album. The songs are great with a lot of memorable melody lines along the way. Of course, as you can expect from such high caliber musicians, the playing is top notch from start to finish.

Sometimes with the Fusion guitar album you enjoy a lot the first song or two then it gets boring really fast because it tends to be all guitar fireworks all the time and not a lot of music left. This is not the case here, you will enjoy a lot dynamic throughout all the album. For example there is this gorgeous piece played on a nylon string guitar called The Beauty of Life which is a joy to listen to.

My favorite song on the album is Zaku Patatu which was composed by Philippe Saisse and arranged by Renaud. It features a great intro which let you listen to a vicious guitar riff to launch the main theme. I can't stop playing the song over and over.

Epic Circus - Renaud Louis-Servais

As stated above, the sense of melody of Renaud is all over the place in this record. At times it reminds me of Joe Satriani because Renaud has the same talent to take you with him on a trip during his songs. Take a listen for exemple to Carry'n which has a super catchy melody.

The gear used on the record

The main guitar used by Renaud for the record is this splendid Tom Anderson Drop Top. Note that the mini-switch is there to split the neck humbucker only.

Renaud Louis-Servais- Tom Anderson Drop Top

And here are the pedals used to get his tone. All the gain are coming from the pedals as the Boogie Formula Pro preamp is set to a clean sound.

Renaud Louis Servais - Nady TD-1

Renaud Louis- Servais - Overdrive pedals

Renaud Louis-Servais - Preamp and power-amp

Official video clip of Epic Circus

Here's the video recorded in Los Angeles with Virgil Donati and Philippe Saisse in January 2015 in the middle of the NAMM show.

Until the next interview, keep on playing the guitar!

Pierre Journel.

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