TRAP THEM “Crown Feral” 


By Dr. Abner Mality

The Swedish “chainsaw” death metal sound is one of the most influential ever for extreme music, but different bands use that influence in different ways. Some are slavishly devoted to recreating it, others take that sound and twist it in new directions.

Dismember has been gone for a long time now. I keep waiting for them to return. I thought maybe they had when I heard Brutally Deceased and “Satan’s Corpse” for the first time. Holy Fred Estby, Batman, this isn’t just Dismember worship…this IS Dismember! To the point where it becomes pretty creepy.  Listen to the song “At One With The Dead” and tell me it doesn’t remind you uncannily of “Override of the Overture” with that melodic twin lead work. These guys are actually from the Czech Republic but you’d never know it. EVERYTHING is in the style of Dismember. But they know that style perfectly. Tunes like “Hostile Earth” and “Where No Gods Dare” could be pure out-takes from any Dismember album.

American band Trap Them is more of a known quantity. These guys are not content to merely ape their favorite bands. They’ve taken the Swedish chainsaw sound and worked it into a framework of American hardcore and even alt-noise on “Crown Feral”. Some songs like “Luster Pendulum” and “Speak Nigh” are blasting, bulldozing Swedish death in the great tradition, but other songs take a different approach. “Twitching IN the Auras” is uncomfortable and claustrophobic, almost doomy. “Phantom Air” has a catchier feel to it than usual…there’s traces of bands like Converge in there and the feel is overall more “American”. You can tell by the extremely warped song titles (“Malengines Here, Where They Should Be”, for example) that some very off the wall thinking going on.

Perhaps Trap Them is not as pure as Brutally Deceased, but I’m more impressed by originality these days. These are both good efforts, but only one is forward-thinking.