Hard rock act explores new sonic territory
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With a new producer and a hard-working approach, Canadian rock mainstays The Trews are poised to showcase an album’s worth of new material.
Singer/guitarist Colin MacDonald, his guitarist brother John-Angus MacDonald, bassist Jack Syperek and drummer Sean Dalton have hit both the highway and the airwaves over the past five years, becoming one of Canada’s most recognizable acts.
With the release of No Time For Later, the band has kept its core sound intact while exploring new sonic territory.
“It’s our best studio offering for a lot of reasons. The songs are the strongest songs we’ve written and it’s definitely the hardest we’ve ever worked on a record,” said John-Angus MacDonald. “It just felt like we were ready to knock one out of the park.”
After spending a combined seven weeks in the studio for their first two records House Of Ill Fame and Den Of Thieves, the five months spent on No Time For Later was a marathon session by their standards.
“It benefited from the attention. It’s another notch. It still sounds like the band because you can’t really avoid how you sound, but it’s definitely a more tight, concise version of it,” said MacDonald.
While it was a long time in the making, the band has come out on the other side re-energized.
Producer Gus Van Go’s (Priestess, The Stills) work ethic and enthusiasm pushed the group both technically and musically.
“Sonically it’s so much different. It’s always nice to explore new territory, it keeps it more exciting for us,” said Dalton. “You don’t want to go and do the same thing every time.”
Van Go’s sense of urgency was a welcome change to previous producer Jack Douglas, who took a less demanding approach.
The result is an organic sounding, hard rock record. The deep groove of single Hold Me In Your Arms shows the band has no intention of toning it down.
While the 13 tracks are mostly of the raucous variety, songs such as I Feel The Rain touch on a softer rootsy side, while the celtic-infused I Can’t Stop Laughing is a tip of the hat to the band’s East Coast heritage. The Stills Liam O’Neil adds texture on piano and organ on several tracks.
Gun Control lashes out against the culture of violence in the U.S., which could make things interesting when they head south in the next few weeks.
“I think there’s a lot of Americans that would want to hear that song,” said Dalton.
“At least 50 per cent of them are going to get it,” MacDonald added.