THE TREWS – The Trews

The TrewsThe first time I ever heard about Canadian rockers The Trews was back in 2005 when I received a five track (I think…) album with an issue of British rock mag Classic Rock (of which I subscribe to). Now, I have this tick that tells me to listen all free records I get with my magazines, no matter what. So I thought The Trews was a really lousy name (still do), but I gave it a spin and boy was I glad I did. The free CD was outtakes from their – what I thought – was their debut album Den Of Thieves (turns out they hade recorded a previous album back in 2003 called House Of Ill Fame, which I still haven’t heard…) and that free five track CD was enough for make me purchase the actual album, which I did. I loved the album and I still listen to it a lot. It was produced by Jack Douglas of Aerosmith fame. But it was the follow up No Time For Later (2008) that I consider their magnum opus. The album is full of brilliant melodic rockers that sometimes goes total hard rock, sometimes almost AOR, but most of the time it’s somewhere in between. Now, it turns out that their name is short for trousers, if I’m not misinformed which kinda explains a thing or two, as they were known as One I’d Trouser when they started back in 1997. All of a sudden, The Trews didn’t look like such a bad name. Since No Time For Later was such a brilliant album I had such high expectations for their 2011 follow.up, Hope And Ruin, but even though that album was really good, it didn’t beat its predecessor – or Den Of Thieves either, for that matter. One of the funny things about The Trews is that they are next to never featured in European rock press and therefore it’s more or less pure luck that any of us (few?) European Trews-fans finds out about their new releases. The fact that The Trews has  a pretty mainstream rock sound – not to confuse with bland or mediocre – it’s pretty damn strange that these guys aren’t huge everywhere. Strange and a damn shame because they are certainly worth it.

With this album, Classic Rock Magazine plays a big part in me finding out about the band – once again. This time, us subscribers got a copy of their new album – the whole album, this time – and that’s only reason I knew that they were about to release a new album at all. Think about it, I’m a music nerd and I usually find out about these things, but with the new Trews album – not a clue! But here it is and as always it’s a pleasure making acquaintance with a new Trews release. They open with “Rise In The Wake”, a heavy, but very catchy rocker and it kind of reminds of their last album’s opener “Misery Loves Company”. Not that they sound the same, but the structure is reminiscent.”Age Of Miracles” is a brilliant little pearl of a pop rocker, “Permanent Love” is a very good power ballad with a contagious hook and with “65 Roses” they provide us with a dark and acoustic pop ballad. By now they have already won me over and I really can’t see them going wrong for the rest of the album. But I’m getting ahead of myself. “What’s Fair Is Fair” is a straight forward, melodic rock song with the typical Trews sound, “New King” is a tough and groovy rocker that should work like a charm live and “Living the Dream” is a brilliant pop song that holds both Beatles and Queen influences, very amiable indeed. The album ends with one of my favourite songs – if not THE favourite song – “Under The Sun” – a rhythmic, beat happy pop rocker, catchier than chlamydia.

If you’re already a Trews-fan, you can buy this album unheard – I’m pretty sure I can guarantee that. And even though this might not be as good as Den Of Thieves or No Time For Later, it’s still a step up from Hope And Ruin, not that that was a bad album, but on here the band feels more focused and the music is more direct and in your face. The way this band can mix several styles, but never lose their identity or sound is quite remarkable and makes for a never dull listen. This is not metal or hard rock even. The Trews sure has their heavier moments and they sometimes borders to heavy rock, but I consider them a rock band. A rock band with their own sound and some really good albums in their catalogue. Never mind their name, just give this band a shot and let the music do the talking. They sure did enrich my music life.

Jon Wilmenius (8/10)

Tracklist:

01. Rise In The Wake
02. Age of Miracles
03. Permanent Love
04. The Sentimentalist
05. 65 Roses
06. What’s Fair Is Fair
07. Where There’s Love
08. In The Morning (Feat. Serena Ryder)
09. New King
10. Living The Dream
11. Under The Sun

14 comments on “THE TREWS – The Trews

  1. Actually I’m gonna have to get this Jon. I subscribe to Classic Rock still but only the digital edition. I was always having to contact the distributor in the US about a missed issue at least twice a year. So to avoid that nonsense I just get it from iTunes now. But I do miss those freebies ! Cool Canuck review!

  2. Thanks so much for this. I’ve loved the Trews for a long time – since they opened for the Stones, early on – and this is the only Trews CD I don’t own. You’ve bumped it up on my To Get List for our upcoming trip to Toronto!

    • Cool. Thanks for stopping by. Do you own House Of Ill Fame? If so, how does it stand up against the other Trews-albums?

      • Ashamedly, I admit that I’ve been reading your posts (Following) for quite a while now, but do not often comment. I should correct that.

        I do own HOIF. It’s great. Where it stands in the discography, or compares? I hope it’s not a cop-out answer, but I tend to think of them as one big long playlist of greatness. Comparing albums is a new challenge for me. Maybe I should do a KMA series, eh?

        Have you heard their acoustic set? It’s really great.

        Just putting this out there too: if there are any that you need, let me know. I can hook you up… I was in the record shop today and almost all of their CDs were only $5 (cdn) each. New CDs! It’s criminal – I think they’re worth a lot more than that!

      • Yeah, I meant compare. I really like this band and my favourites are Den Of Thieves and No Time For Later. Do you think I’ll geet into HOIF as well?
        Which albums are your favourites?

        I have not heard their acoustic set. Fact is, I didn’t even know they had released one.
        Boy, I’d love to see this band live.

      • Looks like I’m due for a series then, Jon! Comparing isn’t something I’ve done – I usually just say Wahoo! A new Trews record! 😉 If I’m reaching for the Trews from my CD shelf it does tend to be DoT or HoIF, though I do share the love with the later stuff so I don’t really have a favourite?

        I think if you liked DoT and NTFL you’ll dig HoIF, for sure. There really isn’t a bad record in the bunch, for my money. HoIF has very strong songs overall. There are a the big radio singles here in Canada (Every Inambition, Not Ready To Go, When You Leave), and just that Trews energy you already know. Great record (for me).

        This is the acoustic set:

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acoustic_–_Friends_%26_Total_Strangers

      • Thanks Jon, I’ll go check that out! Let me know what prices you find – as I said, I can get them all (except the new one) here at $5 CDN each. Might be cheaper for me to get them and mail them!

        Also meant to add, if you want to try out HoIF, you can tour the whole thing on the youtubes…

      • Cool. I found it online, sp I’ll be sure to check it out. I’m gonna check the prices and I’ll let you know. The only studio albums I don’t own yet are Hope & Ruin and HOIF. Thanks a lot.

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