The pervading theme of Trapt’s new album, Someone in Control seems to be that they are trying too hard. The band, best known for the song “Headstrong,” makes claims on their website that they “like it hard and heavy,” but that isn’t quite what I got from the album.
Every song has its little scream-filled interlude and some over-the-top guitar playing, but it seems like the band refrains from doing anything too extreme in hopes of gaining more fans. Trapt is clearly trying to garner some sort of an alternative pop following. Maybe they are hoping to catch some of the overflow from Good Charlotte’s fanbase. The music doesn’t seem heavy enough for real rockers to enjoy, but at the same time, it seems too intense for the average MTV fan. I can’t quite tell where Trapt falls in the world of music, but they do seem very reminiscent of bands like Linkin Park.
Even though Trapt is completely outside of my musical tastes, I found the catchy hooks, which could be found in every song on the album, to be impressive, especially in their newest single “Stand Up.” Surprisingly, the band members actually helped produce this CD, so it was pretty shocking how well made the songs were from a pop standpoint. Whether or not the music is actually enjoyable, it at least makes an impression on the listener. Someone in Control is full of songs that tempt you to move around, maybe even head bang a little in your dorm when your roommate is out.
Imagine your high school’s hard rock band, but pretend that they are better musicians and you’ll have a pretty accurate representation of Trapt. The band seems to play their instruments well and at least all of the songs don’t sound exactly the same, a problem that I see with a lot of popular rock bands.
Some of the songs actually started off sounding like they might not possess the yelling that is so typical of the band, but my hopes were usually dashed within the first minute of each song. “Victim,” the album’s third track, actually begins like it might progress into emo song, but quickly shifts right back into the heaviness.
The biggest problem that I found with the album was lead singer Chris Brown’s voice. Acceptable for the majority of the CD, it grated on my nerves after mere seconds during the few times that he actually attempted to sing. Maybe I’m biased because I’m an English major, but I was pretty disappointed with the quality of the lyrics. With lines like: “Stand up / I have had enough / Walk away before I finish what you started,” there was a lot left to be desired. I guess, however, that blending good lyrics with catchy music is never an easy thing.
Someone in Control is definitely not for the mellow; it seems like a good album to have around after a fight with a friend or a bad breakup. Instead of listening to music that will make you more upset, I think that it would be fun to listen to this CD and yell along.
Trapt’s newest effort is definitely not the worst thing that I’ve heard this year – it’s not even close, but if you aren’t set on listening to some hard music, this isn’t the CD for you.
Archived article by Tara Tavernia