For a band who seemed to appear out of nowhere in 2015 with the hit single “Stressed Out”, Twenty One Pilots (in their current line-up of Josh Dun and Tyler Joseph) have been on the go since 2011 and “Trench” represents their third record for label Fueled By Ramen following “Blurryface” in 2015.
After listening to “Trench” a few times, it’s apparent pretty quick that the surge in popularity has informed the duo’s song-writing. Tracks like the opener “Jumpsuit” talk about the pressure of new found fame all set to a heavy bass line and thumping drums, with Tyler Joseph’s subdued vocal delivery making way for screams towards the end of the track. “Levitate” and “Morph” are more hip-hop influenced songs which show how the band has established some serious crossover appeal. While there are no tracks on show with the immediate catchiness of “Stressed Out” or “Heathens”, the pair should be commended for not simply replicating what made them in the first place, and in some cases pushing it the other way. There are no really obvious radio singles here. This is an album that rewards repeat listens to really scratch the surface of what the band are trying to say.
The song that will get the most attention from the mainstream music press will probably be “Neon Gravestones”, a slow piano driven song that seen Tyler question the dichotomy of celebrity suicide. He questions where the line is to be drawn between celebrating the life that is lost, and glorifying the act of taking one’s life. It’s a song that raises some interesting questions, and shows the maturation in the band’s song-writing.
As with their previous releases, the production is crisp but not over produced and the two main instruments, Tyler’s voice and Josh’s drums, sound flawless. This album shows that TOP aren’t just one hit wonders and that they’re writing music that’s built to last.
Theses are the wise learned words of our man Kevin Dillon, @kevinwritestuff.
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