Mean Business

Written by: PP on 05/12/2016 20:58:23

Swedish screamo/post-hardcore band Traktor has been releasing melancholic and typically Scandinavian sounding post-hardcore records for quite some time now. "Mean Business" is their fourth record where they channel the cold barren winter landscapes of Sweden into an unadulterated, off-tune expression that draws parallels to the likes of Refused, Quicksand, and Blood Brothers.

It's a dense, depth-laden soundscape that showcases an introspective mood, inspired by the chaotic 90s screamo / skramz bands like Funeral Diner, Orchid, et. al or even the Norwegians in Kaospilot, who were heavily inspired by the same bands and released a couple of underrated albums in the mid-2000s. Unfortunately for Traktor, their expression has always leaned on the wrong side of experimental in comparison to, say, Refused, to attract a wider audience. That same continues on "Mean Business", resulting in an expression that is unmistakably Scandinavian strictly stylistically speaking but lacks the critical elements that'd make it a good listen. The songs merely channel the same energy and intensity as others in the genre, but without good enough melodies nor bursts of aggression to bring it home.

Aside from "Senter" and particularly "The Secret", this leaves "Mean Business" and Traktor sounding not just dated, but also regrettably forgettable throughout. Skilled musicianship and a desire for experimentation musically don't always translate into an interesting record, which is also the case here.

Download: Senter, The Secret
For the fans of: Refused, Quicksand, Blood Brothers, Drive Like Jehu, JR Ewing, Kaospilot, Funeral Diner
Listen: Facebook

Release date 19.02.2016
Atlas Rec

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