Album of the Month: Twenty One Pilots’ ‘Trench’

Evan Wologodzew

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Twenty-One Pilots, the Grammy award-winning pop-rock band from Columbus, Ohio, broke their year-long hiatus with a new 2018 full-length LP, “Trench”. The first two singles off the album, “Jumpsuit” and “Nico and the Niners”, introduced listeners to the conceptual world of Trench and the full story that the album sets out to portray. The album is a direct sequel to the release of their 2015, Multi-Platinum and Grammy Award-winning LP Blurryface, which racked up over 3 million physical and digital sales as well as over 3 billion digital streams.
The band’s previous work has spanned over multiple genres; rock, hip-hop, reggae, and synthpop, and this album is no exception. From bass lead rock tracks and hip-hop grooves to piano and string ballads and melancholy organ reggae, each track provides a bite into the band’s varying style. “Jumpsuit”, the opening track, begins with a thumping distorted bassline continues for the entire track, giving way to a softer, muffled piano-led bridge before ending the track with a louder reprise of the leading hook. Background noises synth background noise follow directly into the next track, a fast-paced hip-hop track called Levitate. The rapping in this track is more matured and relaxed than in previous albums by the band, with steady monotone bars giving way to a synth and drum outro. The next track, “Morph”, maintains the hip-hop vibe while adding one of the more memorable hooks on the record giving way to a slower and more relaxed chorus, mixing a falsetto with a droning synth. “My Blood”, another leading single on the album, brings back a similar distorted effect as seen previously on “Jumpsuit”. Mostly bass and drums with minimalistic synths to maintain the atmosphere, the attention is drawn to the vocals and lyrics which the band is known for. “Smithereens” introduces an upbeat vibe almost immediately, with more high pitched falsetto and short snappy vocal lines. This track is one of the weaker additions to the album and is immediately overshadowed by the gloominess of the following track, “Neon Gravestones”. A condemnation to society’s tendency to romanticize and glorify victims of suicide and mental illness. One of the sadder and more depressing tracks on the album, it utilizes a muffled breakbeat in the background and synthesizer, preceding a dark piano outro. “Pet Cheetah” brings back a hip-hop intro, with dark fast-paced rapping before a much slower and sung out chorus before repeating this process again, with heavy synth and distorted drums backing up the dark aspect of the track. “Leave The City” follows the band’s trend of ending their albums with a slower, melancholy piano track, closing out the album with slow snare rolls before speeding the track up and finally ending with a similar piano riff seen in the beginning.
The album can appeal to fans of almost all genres and proves to be one of the bands strongest works. Fans of their previous chart-topping hits such as Stressed Out and Ride will not be disappointed by this phenomenal album. “Trench” will be released October 5th and is available on iTunes, Apple Music, and Spotify.
What I’m Also Listening To This Month:

YSIV – Logic

iridescence – BROCKHAMPTON BALLADS

1 – Joji

Can’t Knock the Hustle – Weezer

Sunflower – Post Malone (feat. Swae Lee)

Cherry Bomb + Instrumentals – Tyler, the Creator

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