Trout Steak Revival: Spirit To The Sea

Reviewed by Harry Kaplan
Some very beautiful bluegrass music. I am not really sure if this would be bluegrass or some offshoot like folk. I don’t want to upset the bluegrass purists, who know the rules. They know the rules a whole lot better than I do. The reason I don’t think it would qualify as traditional bluegrass is because the tempo seems to be a bit slower than traditional bluegrass.

It’s nice music, regardless of how it is classified. These guys and gal hail from Colorado via many different places. Bevin Foley is the only one born in Colorado. I can honestly say this album sounds like Colorado feels. Very big sounds but very smooth. No sharp turns, only long curves. The music is also very airy, indicative of the big Colorado sky. This is certainly a case when the environment has a tremendous impact on the music.
The band is comprised of Bevin Foley on fiddle and vocals; Steve Foltz on mandolin, guitar, and vocals; Casey Houlihan on bass and vocals; Will Koster on guitar, dobro, and vocals; and Travis McNamara on banjo and vocals.  As I mentioned earlier these five make a tremendous sound together. In this case, five equals seven or eight. That’s a really big sound.
Ocean Lady (Track 8) is part bluegrass-folk and part fantasy. This song really makes my imagination run wild. The openness and airiness of the music make it possible for daydreaming. The music screams for it. I didn’t think acoustic music could qualify as psychedelic, but I was wrong. This song is pure psychedelic gold and there is nothing electric about this sound at all. Just beautiful.     
I would be remiss if I didn’t give a shout out to Loving Is Leaving (Track 11). This song is sung by Bevin Foley and it is absolutely brilliant. Her voice is strong and lovely and is soul touching. I think we can surmise from the title that this isn’t necessarily a happy song. It’s about a relationship on the rocks. Sad is good and even though it isn’t exactly upbeat, it is a very memorable song and one that begs to be played over and over.     
This is an album for any occasion. It really doesn’t require a special occasion at all. This is music for your life. It can and should be played often. That is the only way to get enough. Even that is no guarantee. You should really get your own copy. 
Listen to Spirit To The Sea
Buy Spirit To The Sea                 

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