Having performed with artists like Damien Rice, it’s no surprise that the trio known as Trespassers William are familiar with melancholy. What is surprising about the indie, alt-folk/rockers is that they know how to make it sound absolutely stunning.
Having released a couple records – including Different Stars, which led to a record deal with Nettwerk – in their native California, the band decided to move up the coast to Seattle to get serious on their third effort. The group recorded their latest, Having, just outside of Seattle and then subsequently flew to New York to finish the album that will have audiences and critics stumbling over themselves to find out more.
One main reason for achieving a brilliant new level has largely to do with being produced by Dave Fridmann. Fridmann is a legend in his own right, having worked with famed acts such as Mogwai, Flaming Lips, Modest Mouse, Weezer, Low, Phantom Planet and many more. Fridmann helps bring an ambience to the record that wasn’t there on the more folksy efforts, bringing a much needed texture to Trespassers William.
Having opens with the ambient distortion “Safe Sound,” a minimalistic track which properly highlights the subtle voice of Anna-Lynne Williams. The rest of the trio provide a solid if not beautiful backdrop of slight guitars, layered atmospherics, and occasionally crashing percussion. “I Don’t Mind” is a perfect example of the three creating a static swirl of melodic rock that builds to the new heights previously mentioned.
“And We Lean In” conjures images of The Innocence Mission, as Williams’ voice is more stated than normal, driving the melody along with her. “Low Point” is more inviting than many of the others because of its country tinge and accessibility. Finally, “My Hands Up” is one of the best on the album with a haunting mix of piano and electric guitar that subtly overpowers the vocalist. The effort is nothing short of stunning.
Most of you probably have not heard of Trespassers William, but those days are soon to be history. Having is the step forward that TW needed to elevate their music and their status.