The Trews return to play new album Civilianaires and lots of hits

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 Hamilton/ Toronto based , Nova Scotia born band the Trews always put on a truly enjoyable show as  they returned to Average Joes to heat up a chilly night, Tuesday, Feb. 5 with a good, long, solid set of of a good long set of hits , new tracks and obscurities. It was lots of fun, lots of soul  and lots of solos.

e Trews’ John Angus MacDonald solos on top of a pool table at Average Joes, Feb. 5. Photo by Richard AmeryTrews’ frontman Colin MacDonald at Average Joes, Feb. 5. Photo by Richard Amery
 I was saddened to have missed opening act Altameda, but arrived three songs into a solid set of soulful contemporary Canadian rock music, which focused heavily on their brand new, long awaited new album Civilianaires.


I arrived during “Vintage Love,” the first track from new CD.“Leave it Alone” was also a highlight. But they interspersed  some of their bigger sing-along hots in throughout to the set like “Hope and Ruin,” and  their always popular “Sing Your Heart out,” which a  good sized audience was happy to do.
A newer song “ Bar Star” with the catchy refrain “electric in the dark” was a newer highlight.


 The Trews sure know how to heat up an audience, despite not having  a lot to say in between songs, frontman Colin MacDonald’s  vocals dripped with soul and oozed passion. His brother, lead guitarist John-Angus was happy to e Trews’ playing an acoustic set at Average Joes, Feb. 5. Photo by Richard Amerystay in the shadows of a dimly lit stage and knock out tasty solo after tasty solo, though he’d wander into the audience during the end of a set to stand on a pool table for a solo during one of many extended jams on their more popular hits.


 You could really notice how much the band has changed over the years upon listening to the more pop and alternative rock influenced newer songs compared to the massive riffs and blues influence of some of their older material.


 They stripped everything down to the bone for a very enjoyable acoustic set, featuring all of the band gathered in front of the stage strumming acoustic guitars, bass ukulele plus  a melodica plus random percussion. They ended that up with a new song “Amen” which Colin MacDonald said was about saying good bye to someone they have known for a long time. “No More Saying Goodbye” was similarly themed. They turned things back up again for “Power of Positive Drinking” and another new song “Jericho.”
 John Angus wandered  into the audience to solo on top of a pool table and returned to the stage to play his big Les Paul behind his back during one of the jams on one of their bigger hits.

The Trews’ keyboardist playing a melodica.Photo by Richard Amery
Keyboards were also prominent throughout the show, with plenty of keyboard solos on songs like “Paranoid Freak,” one of many songs which had the audience clapping along.


They wound things down with a big jam on “Poor old Broken Hearted,” me,” which included a few bars of blues rock classic “Going Down” and the Trews played “Tired of Waiting” before leaving the stage for a while before returning for a long encore.
 That started slowly and picked up the pace with Highway of Heroes”,” which also had the audience  singing along, their lighters held aloft.


They played some of Tom Petty’s “Mary Jane’s Last Dance,” and ended with “Hold Me In Your Ams, ” which included a mid song segue into the Beastie Boys’ “Sabotage,” before breaking back in to “Hold Me in your Arms.” and calling it a night right before 11 p.m.

— by Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor
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Last Updated ( Wednesday, 13 February 2019 11:46 )