Sound — 7
You can listen to the entire album on Ultimate-Guitar: Trapt Live! album. Live albums have always been fodder for dedicated fans and Trapt's latest release Trapt Live! will undoubtedly satisfy any loyal listener of the nearly 10-year-old band. But it's not necessarily the live portion that makes it memorable. The 2 new studio recordings prove to be the strongest points of the album, with some fantastic guitar work on both. This isn't to say that the audience heard on the album doesn't go crazy for every song that the band plays, but Trapt's newest songs just completely outshine any song of the oldies heard on the live portion. Trapt Live! marks the band's first album with the label Eleven Seven Music, and it's an interesting choice in terms of a kick-off record, if only for the fact that it features the band's older material most of the time. Even so, there is some very promising new material that will hopefully get noticed by others. Everything To Lose has a bit more of a moody feel to it and the overall song is just much edgier (from the use of distortion to the expletives) than most of what Trapt has done previously. That song alone marks a very promising start on Eleven Seven Music. While a lot of bands place the new material at the very end of the CD and play the concert first, you don't hear the Trapt concert until the 3rd track. The start of the concert starts out with the appropriate amount of suspense. There is a quiet build up to the first song, with the fist few moments dedicated to what sounds like a quiet guitar notes and the screams of the audience. The percussion (fantastic deep drum beats) is added not too long after, and the song Still Frame takes form. It's an effective, 6-minute opener that hits it's peak early, with the drum intro really drawing you in. Vocalist Aaron Montgomery takes time to announce mid-song that it's a taped concert, which although somewhat distracting, is still a cool way to get the audience involved. Made Of Glass makes a huge impression in terms of the various guitar effects that come to the forefront. Lead guitarist Simon Ormandy never falls short of trying out effects other than the usual distortion, and it adds a little something extra to a fairly average track like Made Of Glass. While the guitar work stays strong for most of the CD, the songwriting does tend to get a bit repetitive and familiar. Thankfully the newest songs Everything To Lose and Stay Alive display a little bit more originality in the songwriting format.
Lyrics — 8
If you're familiar with Trapt's self-titled CD and the follow-up to it Someone In Control, then you know what you're getting lyrically. Trapt writes pretty standard lyrics in regards to the rock genre, and its latest singles do follow the same type of format. In Stay Alive vocalist Chris Brown sings, No one's here to light the candle; No one's here to light the way; It's something I'll have to handle my way. The songs do seem to be inspired by personal experience, so even if they aren't particularly poetic, they will likely connect with fans.
Overall Impression — 7
In comparison to a lot of other classic live albums out there, Trapt Live! does fall short. There is nothing too unexpected along the way and Trapt's songs don't really allow for any heavy soloing or musical spontaneity to take place. The sound quality is fantastic, though, and it does highlight the instrumentation that's going on underneath it all. Guitarist Simon Ormandy does do some very cool things effects-wise, and he does deserve credit for really taking the songs in new directions at times. For the Trapt fans, the live album is probably a worthwhile buy, even if it's just for the newly recorded songs. Everything To Lose once again features some excellent guitar work, as well as some cool muffled vocal sections. Trapt is the kind of radio-friendly band that may like to stay in it's comfort zone, but the 2 new songs (although still pretty benign) do show the band might be trying out some new sounds in the future.