Monday 18 February 2013

Owen Tromans - For Haden

EP review by

That cover may scream "oh no, here comes another boring acoustic singer-songwriter!", but there's a bit more to Owen Tromans than that. Having been the frontman of indie band San Lorenzo, Tromans' solo career has seen him land support slots with Best Coast, Idlewild and Plush. With several records under his belt, this new EP is something of a pause for reflection. 'For Haden' is named after the area in the Black Country where he grew up, and these songs revisit places and memories of times gone by. Yeah it's all very nostalgic, but it's also very nicely done, thanks in part to the input of collaborator Joe Bennett from Dreaming Spires. As well as the obvious nostalgia of the title-track, we learn much about the area and Tromans' life growing up there through the other songs.

For example, you may expect 'Greg' to be a tribute to an old friend, in actual fact it's celebrating his favourite band of the time, Drop Nineteen and their main man Greg Ackell. Yes it does this in a folk-rock sort of way, just as so many others currently do, but it's kind of heartwarming and quietly grand with it, as is 'Trinity Records', an ode to the shop which will have led to many of his favourite musical discoveries. 'Bella In The Witch Elm' has the hallmarks of a specially designed folk tale, made to cash in on the current trend; it is in fact a rather creepy and mysterious local legend at its heart, this time the music is suitably stark, spacious and slightly spooky. It's all change for final track 'Count The Lights' which harks back to the indie-garage that got him started in the whole business in the first place. A trip down someone else's memory lane isn't always the most fun, but there are some sights worth seeing on this one.

Owen Tromans' website

Buy the EP

Catch him live:

Wednesday 20th February: Birmingham: Hare and Hounds
Thursday 21st February: Reading: South Street Arts Centre
Friday 22ndFebruary: Worcester: The Firefly
Saturday 23rd February: Oxford: Modern Art Oxford
Sunday 24th February: Winchester : Railway Inn
All dates supporting CoPilgrim

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