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Review & Interview: ‘Crossing Bridges’ by Trent Peltz

Trent Peltz released his debut album, Crossing Bridges, on April 8 of 2022. The album is a psychedelic mash up of synth-pop and classic singer-songwriter sounds. Somehow, it all works in a completely unexpected way. 

The first track of the album, “Fallin’ For You”, showcases Peltz’s vocals in his typical melancholy way. Which definitely works in his favor as it’s just a relaxing and smooth sound. Tie that in with this easy synth music and it is honestly a masterpiece for the ears that eases into the next song, “Don’t Pull Your Love”. The two songs seem to go together and tell the story of relationships forming and ending. 

There’s something beautifully ironic about “Maggot” with its name contradicting how lovely the music really is. “Daydream” definitely sounds like a dream. The whole intro is a lovely mesh of keyboard sounds and “oooh” then you’re hit with Peltz’s amazing vocals again. 

My favorite for some reason is “Empty Bottles”. The intro reminded me a lot of Thomas Rhett’s “Life Changes” and it just made sense. It’s a sadder song, so the irony is not lost on me. Seems to me that it’s about addiction. There’s not enough of the right attention brought to the seriousness of this illness. If you or someone you love is struggling, please reach out. You can text your zip code to 435748 to get started.

I know that’s only a few of the songs off the 11-track album, but you should definitely check Crossing Bridges out for yourself. Trent Peltz is a talented musician. For more on the artist and to keep up with all things new, follow him on his socials linked below.

Q&A with Trent Peltz

Q: What would you say your favorite song off Crossing Bridges is?

TRENT PELTZ: Tough question – I love them all! If I absolutely had to choose, I would probably say “Out Of My Mind” is my favorite song on the album. I think it’s very representative of the direction I’m going with my next project, with a slightly more alternative rock vibe and lots of guitar layers, rather than being fully synth-based. I also love that it’s extremely raw and delivered with a tone of vulnerability. I think it’s really relatable to my generation.

Q: Can you walk us through your creative process?

TRENT PELTZ: The only consistent part of my creative process is that all my music (minus “Fallin’ For You”) has been fully made in my bedroom. 

Other than that, my process was entirely controlled by spontaneous waves of inspiration. One night during the pandemic, I was just laying in bed and started humming a melody that created the foundation of “Fade Into Nothing.” Another day, after getting sucked into an article about Janis Joplin’s fatal overdose, I wrote the lyrics for the chorus of “Out Of My Mind” and then stayed up for 24 hours building a song around it.

I think if you’re just starting out with songwriting, it’s often great to have a formula that works for you (i.e., lyrics first then melody, or chord progression first then lyrics, etc.). However, once you do this enough, music becomes the boss, and you just have to listen to him.

Q: We love your songwriting! Who are your biggest influences?

TRENT PELTZ: My absolute greatest inspiration is John Lennon. I’ve been immeasurably influenced by his songwriting since I was 6 years old, and his music truly taught me that songwriting should always be authentic and purposeful. 

I’m also greatly influenced by the likes of Pink Floyd, Portugal The Man, Funkadelic, Elton John, Ray Charles, and Queen (just to name a few).

Q: What was it like playing stadium tours with Grace McKagan?

TRENT PELTZ: Fucking incredible. Grace is one of my best friends in the world, and we’ve been touring together for the last 8 years. For me, touring is what makes a career making music worth it. The icing on the cake. 

In 2018, we had the opportunity to open for Guns N’ Roses on a European leg of their tour. Getting to play on stages that big and watching them play for 50,000+ people every night showed me exactly where I aspire to be one day.

Q: How did studying at Stanford University affect your music?

TRENT PELTZ: For the first year, I constantly asked myself, “Fuck. Did I make the wrong decision not going to music school?” But when I started studying Music, Science, and Technology in my sophomore year, I very quickly realized the answer to that question was, “Absolutely not.” 

After going to conservatory-style arts high school, LACHSA, studying at Stanford gave me a fresh perspective on life, art, and intellect that I couldn’t have gained anywhere else. I was able to explore the realm of complex science and technology applied to the creative sphere of music. I was able to experiment with state-of-the-art technology, such as mixing music in 3D listening rooms or building synths using sensors and laser cutters. This experience profoundly shaped how I perceive and think about music, and has immeasurable influenced my songwriting.

Q: What are you working on now?

TRENT PELTZ: I’ll start to release singles from my next project at the end of summer. This EP will have more of an alternative/rock vibe, and will focus a bit more on the lyrics. Stoked for everyone to hear it!!

Reviewed & Interviewed by Dana L. Sullivan





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