Trap Them treated fans to series of intimate performances surrounding this Summer’s Deathwish Fest, as the band supports new full-length effort, Blissfucker. The follow-up to instant classic, Darker Handcraft (2011), this second effort via Prosthetic Records is the first to feature drummer Brad Fickeisen (ex The Red Chord) and bassist Galen Baudhuin whom were also present as Blow the Scene‘s Senior Photographer Dante Torrieri caught them at the almost other-worldly, Brooklyn Night Bazaar. (Full picture gallery below the fold)
Blissfucker is another dark venture into the minds of vocalist Ryan McKenney and guitarist Brian Izzi, who originally spearheaded the project in the mid-2000s and released a series of pivotal works on Deathwish Inc, Southern Lord, and other staple underground labels. By taking interest in the tasty Swedish death metal guitar tones of the early 90s (influenced by bands such as Edge Of Sanity) and fusing the sound with progressive and driving elements of d-beat punk, metal, and rock, Trap Them (along with honorary 5th member Kurt Ballou) have made an indefinable impact on modern aggressive music, felt across many niches.
Again utilizing the efforts of Kurt Ballou at his now infamous GodCity Studios, the band chose the master Blissfucker via Jack Control (Darkthrone, Mammoth Grinder) at Enormous Door. The resulting culmination of talents has produced a unique sounding addition to the band’s catalogue. The irate vocal attacks sit just under an aggressive guitar tone accentuated by a raw and punchy drum sound. Whereas the previous LP closed out with haunting melodies and near mesmerizing lyrics, Blissfucker packs the meanest punch with the final track, Let Fall Each And Every Sedition Symptom, that just drips with bitter catharsis throughout.
The live version of this latest incarnation packed an incredible wallop with vocalist Ryan McKenney providing what is arguably the most intense and uncontrived performance in the realm of metal/punk/hardcore presently. Not a description we bestow lightly. Not a band to be missed if they come anywhere near your town. Brian Izzi was in command of the strings in a tricky room to deal with sound as the bass locked in offering a menacing distorted low end. For any drummer to cover Chris Maggio‘s work in Darker Handcraft is quite a tall order, but Fickeisen held his ground through obvious stylistic differences and kept the intensity driving forward, shining brightest on the tracks he laid down personally on Blissfucker. McKenney left the stage bloodied and battered almost entirely by his own doing as an elated audience basked in what can only be reiterated as one of the best cathartic musical experiences in present day extreme music.
The bill was rounded out by a hungry pack of solid talents including Louisville mainstays Coliseum who joined longtime friends in Trap Them for this special run of dates. Long Island hardcore conspirators Incendiary and Brooklyn marauders, White Widows Pact set in motion what proved to be one of the most memorable shows of 2014. Listening samples and links to all the guilty parties below. Like what you hear- Buy merch and support these artists.
Words by Joshua T. Cohen.
Photos by Blow The Scene’s Senior Photographer, Dante Torrieri (Useless Rebel Imaging)