It does not seem long since The Lost Trades presented their debut album, The Bird, The Book and The Barrel. It is a captivating release built around the collective vocals of Jamie R Hawkins, Phil Cooper, and Tamsin Quin. Together, they created many sublime moments as songs such as “Hope Cove”, “Kingdom Falls”, and “Distance Brings Us Closer” highlight. Since its release, they have impressed further with their live shows. It includes easily interchanging instruments, with each of the three playing guitar, bass and percussion at different points. Not only that but connecting with their audiences in a fun and engaging manner.
Move forward to the present, and the trio have a new album for our ears. Petrichor offers another collection of folk-enriched songs built on the foundations of their stunning three-part harmony. They say it has a “slightly darker sound and themes including mourning, escape and starting afresh”. From the singles they have released so far, it is shaping up to be something special by The Lost Trades.
When you first listen to Petrichor in full, you notice that there have been some subtle changes to their sound. It still offers that warm folk soundtrack but feels richer with more depth. The opening track, “Old Man of the Sea”, highlights this trait, as well as the mesmerising charm that it possesses. Part of what makes this release sound so good is the authentic and simplistic arrangement. Woven within it all are some instrumental moments that will steal the listener’s attention. It helps to deliver an array of moods, including a happier vibe with songs such as “Fireflies”.
‘Petrichor’ sees The Lost Trades elevate their already impressive songwriting talents to produce their best collection of songs.
The other reason for this depth in sound is the stunning vocals each member delivers. Either as a solo moment or joining forces to create mesmerising harmonies. Throughout the album, they take turns showcasing their talents. For example, Cooper takes the lead on “Long Since Gone”, Quin on “Under The Hornbeam”, and Hawkins on the title track “Petrichor”. Each brings something different but equally fits naturally into the tone of the release.
While listening to Petrichor, it is hard not to appreciate the vocals on display. Some stand out more than others. Even the ones that don’t still sound great. But, for the ones that impress, create some exceptional moments from the album. These include the happy-go-lucky “Daffodils”, where Cooper and Hawkins take turns on the mic. Their upbeat tone, lyrics, and harmonies will make you smile. While “Keep My Feet Dry” sees Quin deliver one of her finest performances. Her voice is gentle and effortless. Excelling further as she shares the lines, “I miss you of course, but there’s freedom here / I miss you, of course, I would / But now your lips are replaced by the raindrops that gently fall / Upon my face, upon my face”.
These voices share an array of captivating stories. Like the music, it delivers an impressive range. It ensures there is something here for everyone. You have the likes of “Atlas” that talks about the life pressures of the world. Highlighted with lines such as “But he’s always too late, and I’m tired of the weight / That he loads onto my shoulder again”. While “Best Foot Forward” shares a positive message to keep moving, even when things are tough. “This Dark Forest” delivers a mesmerising and image-provoking moment. With so much to offer with lyrics such as, “All these things behind me, I do not recognise my way / So here I will stay and watch as the autumn leaves decay”.
Do you still require a reason to listen to Petrichor? Let me give you two. The first is “Little Blackbird”. It offers another outstanding performance by Quin. It is one of those songs that feels right. You also find yourself singing along to “Little Blackbird, can you be heard when you sing?”. The other reason is “Valhalla”, which is something special. Its stripped-back Celtic-inspired soundtrack allows the trio to let their vocal presence shine. They share their story in a way that is almost a cappella. It is a genuine pleasure to listen to it from its start until its end.
“Valhalla” is also the track that closes out the best collection of songs by The Lost Trades. Their vocals have always impressed, but the fine-tuning of their musical arrangements and storytelling has taken them up a level. Petrichor is a release that is worth your listening time. Treat your ears to something new, and give it a listen today!