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The Trews - Hope & Ruin

posted 15 Sep 2011, 06:28 by Paul Woodward

(Bumstead Productions)
Review by Woody

I stumbled across these guys recently and was intrigued by their sound so when the opportunity came to review “Hope and Ruin” I thought it was a prime chance to check The Trews out properly. Having never heard of The Trews before I presumed they were new or relatively so, but after doing some research I discovered these Canadians have been going for well over a decade!

These guys play a style of rock I find it very easy to chill and relax too. I find something unique about the style of The Trews which really appeals to me and the warm raspy vocals are definitely something I enjoy. I think their middle of the road sound may divide fans, but I think everyone can agree these guys can pen a memorable and atmospheric song.

The album opens with the quirky “The World I Know”, which has a catchy chorus – I’ve always been a sucker for choruses with woooahh’s woooahhh’s in there! It’s a simple but very effective song and an obvious choice for a single. “One By One” is laid back with an almost country vibe – VERY Americana! There is a great sway to this song and whilst not having obvious hooks it really does stick with you. I really like Colin MacDonald’s vocal style on this track. “Misery Loves Company” is an upbeat alt rocker which really puts me in mind of Soul Asylum and it has a really memorable chorus.

“People Of The Deer” is a mid-tempo rocker with a bit of swagger to it but it fails to kick in and has me pressing the next button every time. “Stay With Me” has some atmospheric guitars which I really like. It’s an atmospheric laid back ballad with a sweeping chorus which is instantly memorable. The title track “Hope & Ruin” made me instantly think of Train. It’s an atmospheric mid tempo rocker which really stands out. The guitar hook is awesome and the vocal melodies and harmonies are killer.

“If You Wanna Start Again” is a laid back Counting Crows style song, very easy on the ears, but it doesn’t really stand out. My favourite song is “I’ll Find Someone Who Will” which is Americana but with a pop element to it. I really took to this song and found myself nodding my head and singing along. It has a great vibe and some awesome guitar riffs. “Dreaming Man” is a sweeping, atmospheric slice of Americana and it’s another easy on the ears song but it doesn’t demand repeat plays. Although it is fantastic relaxing background music.

“Love is The Real Thing” is a song Springsteen and Petty would be proud of. An upbeat rocker which fans of the above will cream their pants too! “Burned” has a funky 70’s psychedelic laid back vibe with a strong memorable vocal melody on the chorus – now pass that joint over! “You Gotta Let Me In” has fantastic guitar playing and strong vocals which are extremely memorable. A song with a haunting quality which is a great track to end with as it’s a real stand out. Expect to hear this on an American TV show montage soon!

I’m a little shocked these guys aren’t better known here in the UK as their sound would really appeal to the average Classic Rock fan. You can hear their love of the Americana sound in their songs, with Springsteen & Petty instantly coming to mind whilst listening to this album. Although the band have a modern twist and quirkiness and also bring to mind Alt rockers Soul Asylum, Counting Crows, Gin Blossoms and probably most alike Train.

Track Listing: The World I Know / One By One / Misery Loves Company / People Of The Deer / Stay With Me / Hope & Ruin / If You Wanna Start Again / I’ll Find Someone Who Will / Dreaming Man / Love Is The Real Thing / Burned / You Gotta Let Me Out

Album Rating: 8/10

Woody’s Essential Track: I’ll Find Someone Who Will

Hope and Ruin is out now and available from all good retailers.