Released: May 18, 2012
Genre: Indie Rock
Label: Liberation Records
Number Of Tracks: 12
Temper Trap seem to have made an album which has evolved their sound, though hasn't gone away from the beloved sound of "Conditions".
The Temper Trap
Jozef23, on february 07, 2013 0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sound: The Temper Trap are a Melbourne Rock band who formed in 2005. After releasing their EP and playing St Jerome's Laneway Festival in 2006, the band started getting their music on high rotation on Triple J. They then released their stellar debut album "Conditions", with songs like "Fader", "Love Lost", "Science Of Fear" and "Sweet Disposition" creating a very diverse but large fan base.
In 2012 they came back with their long awaited self titled second album. Many were excited due to the release of "Rabbit Hole", though it wasn't a single. But unfortunately it wasn't well received on release, mainly due to the first single "Need Your Love" and it's more "commercial" sound, it slowly gained more popularity due to good reviews and the beautiful second single "Trembling Hands". Third single "Miracle" further increased the popularity of the album.
Temper Trap seem to have made an album which has evolved their sound, though hasn't gone away from the beloved sound of "Conditions". Songs like "Rabbit Hole", "Sea Is Calling" and "Trembling Hands" have beautiful guitar pieces and remind us of the original "Temper Trap" sound, whilst songs such as "Need Your Love", "Miracle" and "This Isn't Happiness" have a new, synth heavy sound. The whole album crosses these ideas and sometimes intertwines them. // 8
Lyrics: Dougy Mandagi is maybe one of the greatest vocalists in Australian history. The way he moves his voice from a low octave into an amazing falsetto is incredible. He has an amazing range, which is shown in "Trembling Hands" where he goes from the soaring falsetto, which is featured heavily in the intro, to a bridge where he digs into his lowest octave, and then into the chorus where he just blasts his vocals through the roof. Another song which impressed me was closer "Leaving Heartbreak Hotel" and "London Burning".
The lyrics are where Temper Trap are criticized most. Though the lyrics aren't bad, they are always slammed by critics about the lyrics. Personally I think the lyrics are a big step up from "Conditions" and though most of the album is about love, there are some songs such as "London Burning" which are political. Second verse of "London Burning": "My analogy isn't nothing on the streets. No one cared and no one looked, 'Til she threw the judge's book. Now who's the one to blame when the children always seem, dancing on their broken dreams, while London's burning from within." These lyrics seem to get to the point well and don't feel cliched. Also the lyrics can sometimes contrast with the sound. A song like "Rabbit Hole" has the lyrics "I don't wanna be the only one 'round here. Everything I'm saying's falling on deaf ear's. Come to get you if you make another sound. Make you an example since you're crawling home" have an angrier feel to them, although the music going with it is a beautiful soft acoustic guitar and Dougy's signature falsetto. The way the lyrics are used are impressive and a big step from "Conditions". // 8
Overall Impression: 1. "Need Your Love" - I would've picked a better opener than this and a better first single. It seems to be a bit to cliched and turned many fans away from Temper Trap. It's not a bad song, and it does grow on you. Plus that chorus will get a beating live.
2. "London's Burning" - A fantastic rock track which has a really cool chanting chorus. Dougy's falsetto is used to his advantage and the news reporters create a good effect.
3. "Trembling Hands" - The 'big' track on the album. I can already see it being played in stadiums to a thousands of crazy fans singing together "So throw me a line". A really great track which doesn't have a bad moment.
4. "Sea Is Calling" - A beautiful track where the guitars really flow with the vocals. One of the highlights of the album.
5. "Miracle" - Dougy's vocals get a workout in the chorus and the build-up of the track is impressive. The guitar riff in the chorus is clever.
6. "This Isn't Happiness" - Another synth heavy track which has a really cool sing-along chorus. An impressive track vocally as well.
7. "Where Do We Go From Here" - A strong track which keeps the album moving. Not really a stand-out, nor does it try to stand-out, but a good track.
8. "Never Again" - A good song, though it does seem a bit like a filler. It does impress, but compared to the songs before it, it doesn't compare.
9. "Dreams" - Probably my least favourite track. Doesn't seem to go anywhere and the vocals aren't close to Dougy's best. The guitar is cool though and is a highlight.
10. "Rabbit Hole" - Personally, this is not just my favourite track on the album, but my second favourite track of 2012. A beautiful piece of music where every instrument comes in at the right time and at the right strength, until it all collapses in on that massive outro where Dougy shouts out a simple statement of strength "You think we're gonna run, you're wrong". An amazing track which takes you on an amazing journey.
11. "I'm Gonna Wait" - Another beautiful track which brings you down well after the climax of "Rabbit Hole". Dougy sings in a low octave in the first verse and the chorus, but then in the second voice he powers through with an amazing vocal display. The song slowly builds and is a very peaceful ballad. The solo, which seems to be a rare one on this album, also serves it's purpose.
12. "Leaving Heartbreak Hotel" - Probably one of the best closer tracks of 2012. Greer's piano line is really groovy and, with Dougy's voice in the verse, it creates a really cool effect. Dundas also makes a really cool tapping in the background and Stillitto's guitar counters the vocals well. It all stops just before with the two guitars playing around the vocals, and then a soft build up to the outro where all the guys start singing in different octaves the line "Catch you in my sleep" with one singing "I'm leaving Heartbreak Hotel". A truly magnificent closer.