Hipper than bands who are trying way to hard to be hip, noisy indie garage rockers (or whatever you want to call them) TRAAMS are a band worth locking your radar on.
For some reason, the folks over at Fat Cat Records, TRAAMS label, only sent over one song, ‘Mexico’ to listen to when introducing us to TRAAM. It’s a good song. I like it. But over on YouTube I found some of their live songs which solidified for me the fact that with TRAAMS, we are looking at a great band. One song in particular that grabbed me is a video of two songs, one called ‘Teeth’ and the other one ‘Klaus’ being played live in Brighton in a loud, unrelenting, sweaty, yet surprisingly laid back way, as if they were gazing at their shoes (Pavement is listed as a mutual ‘love’ among the band members).
I mean, I guess that’s what a record label does. They want people to listen to the newest, hippest thing the band does. And ‘Mexico’ is a free download and presumably the first single off of their debut ‘Ladders EP’ on the aforementioned Fat Cat Records. But this is a band I hadn’t heard of before, so it’s all new to me. So it was nice to see that ‘Mexico’, though a great song, is not the only one they have on offer as I was mistakenly led to believe….by me. Why on earth would I think a band only has one song? I’m losing it in my old age. Of course they would have more songs! Geez, Chris, get it together!
TRAAMS got it together in the summer of 2011. The three boys in the band are Stu, Adam and Leigh. They are from Chichester in West Sussex. And, as the Fat Cat folks say, they play a “noisy, joyous krautrock squall”. Okay, that works for me. But there are some elements of punk, garage and indie rock goodness all thrown in here as well.
I’m enjoying these guys. They got a hipster feel to them that seems to just come naturally, as opposed to trying to act like hipsters. I guess what I mean is that they come across as genuine. They come across as three guys who just started making music in a small town and it all started to click. And click it did, because they sound tight, grounded and developed. There is definitely a lo-fi production quality, which is perfect because it absolutely suits what they are doing. If they even tried slick production, I fear it would suck the life out of them. Keep it raw! Keep it real!
Over on their Soundcloud page there is a song called ‘Peggy’ which I absolutely love. Again, very raw and rough….and perfectly so. There is almost a Misfits chugging sound at times (I hope I’m not the only one who hears that), with a bit of Beach Boys “Ooooos” and brilliant fuzzed out, Dinosaur Jr.-esque guitar solo thrown in. Oh, ya, and then they have their “studio” version of ‘Klaus’ on that page as well. That one I love too. A bit of surfy guitar is even tossed in there for good measure. The vocals often match up with the notes to make a roller coaster, flight of the bumblebees sound, particularly on ‘Mexico’.
Oh, let’s just face it, I love these guys. Half the time you can’t understand a single word they are singing, which is perfectly okay. They just have it all going for them. Simply put, TRAAM is a great, great band. They are noisy and raw, but in a chilled, non-hyper way. They just close their eyes, chug along and play fine, fine music. Good on them! This is another nice find. Thanks, Fat Cat Records for letting us know about them. I appreciate it!
Words by Chris Hearn. More writing by Chris on Louder Than War can be found here.