Review: Trent Romens – Aware
Posted on: Monday, Nov 7, 2011
It seems that over the last few years most of the young blues and rock guitar slingers have emerged on our side of the ‘pond’, however here is an assured 10-song set from 19 years old Trent Romens, from Edina, Minnesota . . . he definitely has the requisite ‘chops’ in the guitar playing stakes, but even at his tender age he seems to have a pretty decent voice too!
In the company of John Wright (bass and co-producer), Tony Marshall (Hammond B-3), Jordan Carlson (drums), Tony Paul (percussion) and Cate Fierro and Shalo Lee (backing vocals) he kicks off “Aware” with the thumping “Stimulate Me”, with it’s stop-time and his fiery guitar underpinned by the afore-mentioned Marshall’s fine Hammond playing. He changes the pace on the country blues stomp of “Material Blues” – starting off on acoustic before changing to electric and featuring the fine backing vocals of Fierro and Lee.
He rocks hard on his own “Fairy Tale” which builds to a close with a blistering guitar solo, before he and the band stretch out over 7:35 on the blues classic, “Going Down Slow”, with searing slide intro over Marshall’s keyboards and plenty of dynamite soloing from Romens himself. The strutting “Right Back Where I Started” has a “Walking Blues” feel to it with impressive vocal from the young man and more slide fireworks. The release’s only other cover is a take on Big Bill Broonzy’s “Key To The Highway” . . . delivered here acoustically to show Romens versatility.
The ballad “Love’s Lost Cause” is a soulful original, his vocal ably backed up by Cate Fierro and Shalo Lee as the songs builds throughout its course, with more guitar fireworks at the end; the album closing with “Hey Now”, a return to the acoustic guitar, with a reggae feel – possibly inspired by the late, great Bob Marley – plus harmony vocals and the percussion of Tony Paul . . . a nice ending to a fine release from a name to keep an eye on for the future.
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