Ron Trent
Credit: Steven Piper

Chicago dance-music veteran Ron Trent creates deep house that can keep a dance floor jumping for hours while simultaneously maintaining an intoxicating tranquility. Since the early 90s, Trent has built a reputation for appealing both to house heads who treat Marshall Jefferson’s “Move Your Body” as a commandment and drone devotees who thrive on meditative, atmospheric thrumming. For his first full-length album in 11 years, What Do the Stars Say to You (Night Time Stories), he collaborated with musicians whose backgrounds span several genres but who all share Trent’s goal of making immersive mood music that’ll have you nodding your head without realizing it: they include Texas psych-rock phenoms Khruangbin, Italian ambient composer Gigi Masin, and the two surviving members of Brazilian fusion trio Azymuth (bassist-guitarist Alex Malheiros and percussionist Ivan Conti). Trent juggles several instruments—guitar, percussion, synth—while guiding the album through tropicalia, soul, smooth jazz, light funk, and more. The gentle poise of his creative direction produces a fluid, imaginative experience as rejuvenating as a trip to the sauna.

Ron Trent’s What Do the Stars Say to You is out 6/24 via Bandcamp.