9 Jun 2023

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Shadowcaster - Single Review: Cast a Shadow

26 May 2022 // A review by Kev Rowland

Although there is a band when it comes to performing live, in the studio Shadowcaster is a one-man affair with Trent Graham performing all manner of guitars and some keyboards. While it contains elements of the likes of Mumford & Sons there is also a very definite nod to The Levellers and our very own Albi & The Wolves (although with no violin). The use of a distorted electric guitar over the top of the acoustic gives the music a distinctive folk-rock feeling, and at times it feels quite basic and taking us back to the early Seventies while there is also some lead picking which feels very Americana in style.

There is a naivety within this, and the use of simple percussion does little to drive the music forward apart from providing a basic beat. This lack of drive and depth is something of an issue in that while this is an interesting number with strong vocals and presence, there is also very much the feeling of an opportunity missed. It does not build as it should, and at the end instead of a climax it just drifts away. However, it must be said that this is a debut single and although Trent has previously been involved with bands it has been some six years since he was working in the scene, so this is very much the early stages of Shadowcaster, and he has started with what is designed to be the theme song. I am sure there will be progression and more layering in the arrangements as he moves forward, and while not absolutely essential there is no doubt that this is a grower and benefits from repeated plays. It will be interesting to see how he builds on this, as there is promise here and I look forward to hearing more from Trent in the future.

Rating: ( 3 / 5 )

About Shadowcaster

Shadowcaster is Trent Graham, a musician based out of Palmerston North, New Zealand.

Trent began life under his new moniker in 2021, six years after his last musical venture Thistle & Weeds (a Manawatu-based folk outfit featuring Kokoa Nashi and Ripple Effect guitarist Christian Perry). Before that, Trent grew up with a diverse musical palette including the likes of Cat Stevens, Robbie Williams and the Backstreet Boys. Trent wouldn’t truly fall in love with music until he discovered the debut Mumford and Sons album Sigh No More, which would propel him to where he is now.

Trent began his performing journey at Wairarapa College, earning several accolades in and outside of school (including the Regional Lyric Award at the 2013 Smokefree Rockquest, and a college Arts Elite Award).He would then go on to complete a Diploma in Contemporary Music Performance at UCOL, under the tutelage of Kane Parsons (Smokey Feel & The KaRs), Nigel Patterson (The Black Seeds) and Warren Maxwell (Fat Freddy's Drop, Trinity Roots).

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