Katie Barbato will release her eagerly awaited album, ‘The Trail of Us’ today and it really is one not to be missed.
With a career lasting over two decades, you might have thought she might be running out of creative ideas but like so many artists, the pandemic created a burst of creative inspiration. Katie has released nine albums before this one and has previously been a four-time winner in the International Song Writing Contest, as well as spending time writing music for TV and film. Her music and songs have featured in various films and dramas as well as on the hugely popular Australian television series ‘Neighbours’.
This tenth album will feature 14 tracks with production and engineering by multi-instrumentalist Brett William Kull. Since her debut album ‘Shootin’ For Noon’, Katie has been writing and recording beautiful alternative folk music with absolutely no plans to slow down.
The pandemic enabled many artists to work without the shackles of responsibility and in many cases has created a rich vein of quality music. The fact that globally we were all in the same boat has given us a worldwide commonality that has meant that we were all inexorably linked like never before; that common experience that we all endured, and for many are still enduring, brought us all together and created a groundswell of song writing for Katie.
She is quoted as saying she had “an extreme burst of creativity where I thought I would explode from so much song writing”.
The result is an album of real quality and Katie is clearly excited by the album. She says:
“I’m at a place in my song writing where I’ve matured and hopefully become more self-aware than I was earlier in my career. I’ve hopefully gotten better at my craft over time. Recording ‘The Trail of Us’ with Brett during the pandemic was a wonderful experience. The circumstances dictated that it be a small intimate operation. I consider it as much his album as mine”
One of the outstanding songs from the album, ‘Embers’, features the opening line “I don’t wanna see it, I just wanna feel it, deep inside my chest”, and if a line sums up the way her articulate and beautiful story telling musicality unfolds in songs, it is this one. Her words really do make you feel what she is saying deep inside in a very organic way.
The song and the album promise to be a delicate and yet powerful soundtrack to the coming months stronger from its conception during pandemic. Along with Brett Kull who contributes backing vocals, guitars, bass, piano, keys, percussion and glockenspiel, the record includes backing vocals and piano from Jeremy Beck, drums from Jordan Perlson and cello from Michael Rondstadt.
As we all emerge from the trials and limitations of the pandemic, this is exactly the album we need. It feels like it has been a cathartic process for Katie to have written the record and it will be a thrill for the artist, I’m sure, to be able to release her new music to the world and even more exciting to have the chance to play it. Live music is of course the lifeblood for artists and Katie is no different.
This is the third album she has produced with Brett William Kull and for me the most accomplished; he creates incredible soundscapes to complement Katie’s brilliant writing and vocals and over the fourteen tracks manages to satisfy anything the listener may want to take away from the album. This makes it feel like some of the classic albums we love and seems to resonate more with the listener on repeated plays as it bores its way into your very soul.
The album takes you on a soul searching journey through the seasons and deserves a complete listen. My advice is not to cherry pick at the record but to listen to it in its entirety; in that way the whole emotional journey will feel like a complete one and like a stunning piece of music from your favourite movie will become part of the soundtrack to your life.