Trapt is a band that has been around for longer than I realized. I first heard of them when they played at the first Crüe Fest in the summer of 2008, but I didn’t realize they had been around for over a decade before then and were four albums (three major label) deep into their recording careers. Another eight years later and Trapt is set to release their sixth major label studio album DNA.
Never really one to truly stand out in the sea of alternative hard rock and post-grunge bands from the early 2000’s, Trapt have never really been a band that I truly followed. I’ve heard a few songs since attending that Crüe Fest show and I still hear their hit Headstrong on the radio practically on a daily basis, so I’m hoping that with DNA I’ll be able to make up for lost time.
DNA starts off with a few songs that are good, but don’t quite get the ball rolling for me. Human (Like The Rest Of Us) is a song much like others by Trapt that I’ve heard on the radio in that it has its hooks that can make it a single for the album, but it lacks a true punch that could make it a great song. It’s Over adds a little more punch to the music with its slightly higher tempo but I have yet to hear a real standout track.
The true preeminent tracks on DNA all hit you at once. Tangled Up In You, Changing Hands and Unforgiven all come one after the other and are all what I would consider great songs for Trapt. Starting with the semi-upbeat Tangled Up In You, its vocal harmonies and guitar leads all introduce an unexpected melodic side that make up for the slight doubts the first two tracks gave me. Changing Hands has a similar tempo to its previous track, and has melodies just as great, but what differentiates it is its more serious sound. Lastly, Unforgiven provides high energy hard rock reminiscent of other bands from Trapt’s early days like Drowning Pool, only less heavy. I like the songwriting of it too, as it slows down seamlessly at times into a dark ballad before exploding again into a mid/fast tempo hard rock song.
These songs did give me a new lease on DNA, even though most of the rest of the songs that Trapt offers don’t really come close to being as dynamic. Only the song Castaway is one I’d consider on par with them. DNA’s leading single is Passenger but I think plenty of better songs could have been chosen, as I find Passenger at times to be one of the albums least significant tracks, with only a good chorus giving it notice.
The remaining songs on DNA have their traits. Trapt do a good job on Getting Even at smoothly transitioning from fast paced verses to a slower but equally hard hitting chorus. Not So Different has great integrity and I think the writing effort put in to this song trumps pretty much all others on DNA from an instrumental point of view. Anchor has a dark undertone to its heavy music, but much like Passenger, I feel it lacks a real identity. Closing track Fallen Angel has a chorus that could stick in your head the way it sticks in mine. I wish the verses had as much dynamics to them as the chorus does, but regardless I think it’s a good closer to DNA.
DNA is an album that Trapt fans and huge alternative hard rock fans are sure to love, but that’s about it. It’s a pretty good album, a little out of its time that I hope can get the band some new fans. However, unless you were one of the biggest bands of the early 2000’s like Breaking Benjamin or Seether, alternative hard rock has been on a down swing for a few years now. It pains me to admit because I enjoy the subgenre, but I don’t know how much further it can go. For the time being though, there is still a good core of bands keeping it alive who should see some magic in this album when it comes out on Friday.
Thanks for reading!
7.5 (Out of 10)
|2||Human (Like the Rest of Us)||4:07|
|4||Tangled up in You||4:07|
|9||Not so Different||3:28|