Finding Our Place by Trapped Within is aptly named, a band finding its sound, its dynamic between new band members. There are some real gems on the album and each song is performed with a lot of heart.
The album opens with “Rising Sun,” which features an arpeggiated electric guitar in 6/8 time and vocals that have traces of Eddie Vedder and Brad Roberts. It’s a short but poignant introduction to the record. “Of Innocence” keeps up the early Pearl Jam influence as well as some early ‘90s Goo Goo Dolls. The verse is built around a singular riff and contrasted with a more spacey and open bridge before the band breaks down to show off the individual sections. The song is full of tangible energy.
“Heart Lives For Content” has a plaintive melody that is sung with great emotion, accompanied by palm-muted guitars and tick-tocking arpeggios. The song also features some of the best guitar solos on the album, which are melodic and emotive, emulating the vocal melody but putting its own stamp on it. Some editing in length could help the song keep its momentum the entire time, but the bass feature near the end is a nice addition. On “One Night Stand” between chime-y guitar counterpoints in the verse and the distorted chorus makes it work very well here, differentiating each section while still finding continuity between them. “Revolution” has a Foo Fighters vibe to it based around a propulsive riff and a quick tempo. With a melody-guitar-solo and compact running time, the song is a great example of keeping in the most essential elements to highlight the best features of the writing.
Some of the songs could benefit from some editing. “Euphoria” incorporates driving buzzy guitars, square wave synths and pulsating bass and drums under a filtered vocal. The verses and choruses have some grit and energy to them, but some of that gets lost during the instrumental solos, which let the song meander a bit and sometimes are out of sync with each other. Some trimming might streamline the song, which is catchy.
“Let Her Ride” keeps a steady drumbeat throughout while dueling guitar parts rain down chime and fuzz. The band accents the lyrics in the chorus, which is effective in bringing out the chorus. Unfortunately when the band does it instrumentally in the middle of the song it comes across more like Morse code than a callback of the chorus. The song also stays in a similar dynamic throughout, and could use some more rises or falls in the energy or volume to give the sections some contrast.
“Closure” is based around an acoustic guitar and a loud electric guitar countermelody. The song is a nice contrast to the faster rockers on the album, but some of the mixing puts the electric guitar so prominent, it steps on the vocal melody from time to time. Still, the chorus is extremely melodic and catchy and the guitar solo that follows sears and soars into anthemic beauty. “Where Have They All Gone” combines the garage jangle rock of a band like Them with a more bluesy festival jam like Ten Years After. Some of the spoken interjections of “yeahs!” and “come on’s!” could use the same vocal inflections that is displayed during the rest of the song to avoid some awkwardness. The middle guitar solos are epic, but then the song continues on for another verse and chorus and seems a bit long. “Wonderful World” feels a bit sloppy with the band out of time with themselves several times, the electric guitar pushed too far in front of the mix and some out of tune acoustic guitar. Again, the song feels a bit long with the extended guitar solo at the end (though with some great use of tone) with another chorus added on after that.
The album closes with “Setting Sun,” the darker mirror image of the opening track now filled out with echoing rim clicks and more vibratos on the guitars. Here, the length of the track is earned as the song reaches a crescendo into the concluding guitar solo, which also features the most energetic drumming on the album.
The band has a lot going for it, but some revisions/editing to the songs could make for a tighter more efficient package that shows off what they do best.
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