Our existence is ruled by sevens. Seven continents. Seven seas. The seven days of the week. The seven colors in the rainbow. Seven wonders. On album No. 7, The Orange Peels are confronting the significance of making music in the current social and political climate. What does it mean to make art in tumultuous, polarized times? Does it change the game altogether? How can music make a difference? Can it? On Trespassing the band wrestles with all these questions, turning their gaze inward to see where it all might have gone wrong, and outward to ask the big questions about our place in the universe. It's a welcome exploration for the times that finds both despair and hope at the end of its many rainbows.
From the get-go, Trespassing pierces the heart of our fragmented and polarized culture with a plea to the universe: "Can we switch to Camera 2? There's something I think we might all be missing." Change is afoot, and we need a wider view – or at least a second camera angle – to figure out what to do next. "Running Away" sees bandleader Allen Clapp turning the lens on himself with the same unsparing search for truth. He's running away. He's hiding for fear of being seen – or saying something he might actually mean. It's a pop-perfect Northern California ode to mountain towns and lost weekends, delivered with the angsty drama that only fellow Northern Californians like Lindsey Buckingham and Stevie Nicks seem to be able to muster. The dystopian pop of "Stealing Days" weighs the social cost of fighting back against enemies with the refrain, "You can tear me down if it builds you up, You can wear me down if it makes you feel better."
But it's not all doom and gloom. There's elation in the grooves of "Room 222" where miracles could be lurking around any and every corner as the loopy, off-kilter rhythm provides structural support for waves of ethereal emotion. And there's longing in the magic of "Mountains," where Clapp invites the listener to "Tell me something by the Rowan tree, Tell me something about you, about me." "Dawn Tree" embraces the natural world, leaving plenty of space for acoustic instruments and a soaring string arrangement by composer Mike Brown. "Heart Gets Broken by the Song" depicts the songwriter's dilemma – a fleeting muse that can't be tracked down when you need it, and a lyricist's conundrum in the realization that "Ooohs and Ahhhs can tell you more than stanzas."