Review Summary: Can you hear me, Major Tom?
First off, Trailer Trash Traycs is a poor and poorly suited name. It evokes, to this mind at least, some kind of punky, noisy rock outfit of some variation or another. The sounds of this London outfit’s debut LP, Ester
, couldn’t be further from that suggestion. The sound is almost the audio equivalent of the hazy, blurry artwork adorning the sleeve - a trippy, gurgled collage of synthetic atmospheres and sparse, angular bass/lead intrusions, meshing into an overall cauldron of spacy lo-fi noise.
‘Rolling Kiss The Universe’ opens the set on an jarring, abstract note – all background drums thrashing odd rhythms and almost-funky bass chords filtering in through misty smokescreens of countless odd noises, spacy synth warbles and indefinable vocal wails. The cut segues into one of the strongest offerings seamlessly, demonstrating what an interconnected debut this is. ‘You Wish You Were Red’ sees Susanne Aztoria’s reverb laden vocals married to an extremely simple but hooky chord which eventually evolves into a more fluid, but nonetheless tampered with riff.
It’s an interesting sound for sure and is dense enough to warrant hits of the repeat button, but as the set rolls on it becomes apparent that variety and distinction are supremely valuable qualities for a young indie group to adopt – especially one who wanders so freely into space as much as the Traycs do here. The problem is not in the sound itself but rather that such a sound rarely gets contained enough to feature memorable melodies – TTT are merely gazing into space at times and can’t or won’t shift their telescope.
Such a notion holds Ester
back from higher praise but the fact remains that there’s oodles of potential (literally) floating around in the airwaves here. When they clear out the murkiness somewhat and find way for a little more melody, TTT deliver the goods, presenting a genuinely interesting dream-pop sound, as per ‘Starlatine’, and the even stronger ‘Candy Girl’. When they focus their sound and reel it in from orbit the results become more compelling, in other words.
Regardless of its downfalls, Ester
remains an intriguing, brisk 33 minute shuttle ride through a dense and sometimes brilliant dreamscape, and definitely ensures the TTT’s are one to watch in the coming years. If only these tripped-out Londoners could find a way to contact ground control and grasp the balance between spacy experimentation and pop melody a little more firmly, they may just find which way their spaceship needs to go in order to reach an audience and deliver a little more substance.
‘Rolling Kiss the Universe’, ‘You Wish You Were Red’, ‘Starlatine’, ‘Candy Girl’, ‘Turkish Heights’.