Trapped Under Ice – Big Kiss Goodnight


Album

Big Kiss Goodnight

Label

Good Fight / Reaper / Dogfight Records

Year

2011

Genre

For Fans Of

Cold World - Leeway - Biohazard

Summary

Trapped Under Ice are still cold.

Rating

90 / 100

If my hunch is correct, the title “Big Kiss Goodnight” seems to have been less than subtly inspired by Biggie’s track “Long Kiss Goodnight”. Combined with the fact that Trapped Under Ice rorted their name from a Metallica song, these two facts seem to sum up this band pretty perfectly. More than having a liking for ripping off iconic song titles, Baltimore hardcore’s finest could also be described as something like a marriage between Leeway and an episode of The Wire.

Breaking out in 2008 with their much-loved EP “Stay Cold”, TUI dropped their debut full-length “Secrets Of The World” via Reaper Records the following year. Without that new band glow, they have had more to prove with “Big Kiss Goodnight” and have pulled out all the stops. For starters, Trapped Under Ice definitely didn’t skint on production. New Found Glory’s Chad Gilbert, who has now confidently helmed records by hardcore juggernauts including Terror and H2O, can be held partially responsible for how good this record sounds. In some ways the much crisper, cleaner feel of “Big Kiss Goodnight” takes away from their otherwise unapologetic heaviness, but a different direction in production allows guitar melodies to take centre stage.

Frontman Justice Tripp’s vocals have been honed to a noticeably sharper, more high-pitched scream, while the album’s riffs and rhythms are tighter than on past material. Despite the naysayers, Trapped Under Ice really do manage to bring freshness, groove and enough originality to a largely stale tough-guy hardcore genre. On “Big Kiss Goodnight” they branch out a bit, particularly with the welcome inclusion of NYHC-inspired melodic vocals on “Dead Inside”, “True Love”, and “Disconnect”. Tracks like the opener “Born To Die” and “Draw The Line” have a more old school, punk hardcore feel to it than their slower, nu metal inspired cousins on “Secrets Of The World”. Yep, there’s plenty on “Big Kiss Goodnight” we’ve heard before. Does the dun-dun-dun part in “Jail” remind you of Agnostic Front’s “Peace”? Some of it we literally have heard before. While on the demo version “Soul Vice” was the appetiser, “Still Cold” provides a great lead-in to the grand finale on “Big Kiss Goodnight” – a perfectly rehashed edition of one of their best ever tracks, “Reality Unfolds”.

Conclusion

“Big Kiss Goodnight” is everything you expect from a sophomore hardcore release. Confident songwriting, stylish production, big mosh parts and some minor musical evolution ensure that Trapped Under Ice’s latest offering will be one of the most (rightly) hyped albums of 2011.

Tracklisting

1. Born To Die
2. Pleased To Meet You
3. Jail
4. Outcast
5. Victimized
6. Time Waits
7. Dead Inside
8. True Love
9. Disconnect
10. Draw The Line
11. You and I
12. Still Cold
13. Reality Unfolds

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