Trying Time

Joe Carey

Dynamic roots rock driven by organic guitar tones, soulful passionate vocals, and painfully honest emotional lyrics.

In early 2018, Minnesota roots rocker Joe Carey headed north to his home state's "Iron Range" to record a 5-song EP at Rich Mattson's Sparta Sound Studio. Inspired by societal and political turbulence that the country seemingly had been facing, it would be his fifth release to date and second with Mattson producing. But as the months passed between recording sessions, fodder for more songs came to light. Political headlines, a couple of back to back brutal winters, a near year long divorce process... Carey had more to get off his chest and what was meant to be a 5-song commentary became a 10-song catharsis.

Trying Time is a collection of ideas, observations, and experiences based on events that took place in 2017 and 2018... both publicly and in Carey's personal life, at times blurring lines between the two. For instance, the opening title track was originally about resisting the urge to take on a social media troll who taunted a friend with anti-Semitic hate speech but later took on a broader meaning that would be echoed in the album's closing track "Oh Grandfather": Trying...when faced with adversity. take the high road when every fiber of your being is telling you to hit first. be better and do good.

But the album is not ALL doom and gloom...yes, Trying Time includes SOME lighter fare. "Apollo's Creed" is a rocking tongue-in-cheek recounting of the first installment in the Rocky franchise, the Pogues-esque "Thought I Was Irish" questions the results of an Ancestry DNA test, and "Vying For You" is a testament to things getting better when it seems there is little hope.

Sonically, Trying Time is edgy and guitar-heavy to fit Carey's raw emotional vocals but, at times, is balanced out with the help of organ/piano (Joe's brother James Patrick Carey) and violin (Jillian Rae). As for of the Cat Stevens, Neil Young, Terry Reid vein are likely to find a kindred spirit in Carey through these songs. But Trying Time as a whole - be it a reflection of the days in which we're living, a metaphorical "gut check", or just a good ol' no frills roots rock album - is sure to have a little something for everyone.

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