36 Crazyfists
Time and Trauma


3.5
great

Review

by Dan H. EMERITUS
February 19th, 2015 | 65 replies


Release Date: 2015 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Brutal, bleak and honest, 36 Crazyfists return sounding as good as ever.

The most unfortunate side effect of being a musician is that you miss out on a whole lot of real life whilst touring and living on the road. There’s often a price to pay when you do what you love on a grand scale, and it’s something which Brock Lindow and the rest of 36 Crazyfists know only too well. By churning out a new album every two years between 2002 and 2010, Lindow and co. missed out on a lot of family life, but that all changed with a phone call following the release of Collisions and Castaways. The band did the most important thing you can do when you’re reminded that your loved ones are finite, they took a break. This turned out to be not only an incredibly necessary move for Brock Lindow as a human being, but for the future of 36 Crazyfists too.

Collisions and Castaways was 36CF on autopilot. They took you to the destination, but there were no detours, no scenery and no landmarks along the way to make the journey anything other than a simple procession. The five year break allowed the band members to grieve, to reflect on life, and to become regular citizens again, but most importantly it reignited the spark of aggression which pervaded their early work and made them so appealing. Time and Trauma is the darkest, heaviest record they've released in years, and it sees them recapture at least some of the magic they used to have. The riffs are often more controlled than on previous releases, and guitarist Steve Holt opts for a Devil Sold His Soul approach, with heavy slabs of guitar preferred to fanciful lead work. It’s a successful formula as it complements the tone set by Lindow, and both the efficacious ‘11.24.11’ and the crushingly heavy ‘Silencer’ greet you with thick, distorted riffs which barely abate throughout.

Vocalist Brock Lindow has always been the band’s biggest selling point, and that continues to be the case here. However, to say he sounds revitalised on Time and Trauma would be to do him a great disservice, as it would ignore the real reasons behind his improved, potent delivery. The lyrics bubbling underneath his harsh yells reveal the difficulties of the last 5 years, and they help to explain why his increasingly gruff voice is charged with intensity. When he delivers lines like: “Lately I've decorated far too many graves” on the album’s title track, or “I loved loving you was the last thing she said” on ‘11.24.11,’ you can clearly picture the scenes and imagine the realities behind the words. The stark, vivid lyrics give the album an immensely personal touch which can’t be manufactured, and it allows the listener to connect with 36CF again - something which has in truth been missing for years.

Unfortunate circumstances gave 36CF the time to step back and look at their discography, to view their evolution, and to decide if Collisions and Castaways was really the direction they wanted to head in. The dark, crushing sound of Time and Trauma suggests that it wasn't. Fans of their early work will be pleased by the return of the heavier sound, but the inspiration for the album and the message it conveys are infinitely more powerful than any of the crushing riffs or grating vocals. Time and Trauma makes me want to spend time with those I love, to go the extra mile for them and to never take anything I value for granted. To be honest, a record hasn’t done that to me in years.



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user ratings (135)
3.2
good
other reviews of this album
CrazyBrave1982 (3.5)
..we will all experience trauma during our lives....



Comments:Add a Comment 
VheissuCrisis
Emeritus
February 19th 2015


1389 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Pleasantly surprised by this album.

Angelboros
February 19th 2015


1357 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Nice review; agreed with pretty much everything you said here. Admittedly, I managed to earn some enjoyment out of the last two albums, but on those, 36CF also sounded quite hollow for the most part. I'd say this matches up to A Snow Capped Romance in terms of quality so far.

MuhNamesTyler
February 20th 2015


6707 Comments


Good review. I'm gonna check this out over the next few days

MattGandee
February 20th 2015


39 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I agree completely with this review. I really enjoyed Bitterness the Star, A Snow Capped Romance and (to a slightly lesser extent) Rest Inside the Flames, but found everything that came after that to be bland, generic and unmemorable. This is a much-welcomed and much-appreciated return to the form for the band.

Wizard
February 20th 2015


20497 Comments


I did enjoy their first two albums back in the day but haven't listened to them since. Review was an enjoyable read and brought back some nostalgic thoughts on this band.

bmyers
February 20th 2015


17 Comments


big fan of the album. only drawback is that i miss thomas noonan's drumming.

SomeGuyDude
February 20th 2015


377 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

It's a fine album, but... "brutal"? "Dark and crushing"? That's more than a little exaggerated. Makes it sound like it's a Napalm Death album or something.

MattGandee
February 20th 2015


39 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Well, in context, the reviewer is comparing it to the rest of the band's discography, so I believe "dark and crushing" is meant to mean "dark and crushing by 36 Crazyfists' strandards," rather than all music as a whole.



My only issue with the review is that there's a little too much time spent talking about the band themselves (with a significant amount of focus on their history, and past successes/failures) rather than how this specific album sounds, though it's understandable given the notable hiatus leading up to it.

CaimanJesus
February 20th 2015


3815 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Shit this is out?

fromrows
February 20th 2015


452 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Nice review dude, agree a lot with this!:-)

bach
February 20th 2015


16287 Comments


NEED A THOUSAND HEARTACHES
A THOUSAND HEARTACHES

DrGonzo1937
Staff Reviewer
February 20th 2015


18181 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

11.24.11 reminds me of Around the Fur era Deftones.



Not a bad thing.

VheissuCrisis
Emeritus
February 20th 2015


1389 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Thanks all.



Matt, you've answered someguy's point nicely for me there. On your point, I definitely see where you're coming from, I do spend a fair amount of time reflecting. While I was writing it just felt like the most appropriate way to tackle it though, given the inspiration behind the album.

stuck_in_decades
February 20th 2015


814 Comments


I've been revisiting these guys again recently as they were one of the first ''heavy'' bands I got into and A Snow Capped Romance has a lot of nostalgic value. I was pleasantly surprised with the positive review since their other recent releases were very disappointing to me, going to listen to this now.

henryChinaski
February 20th 2015


4960 Comments


Haven't listened to these guys in ages. Will check this out. Congrats on your promotion!

JohnFire
February 20th 2015


876 Comments


Kinda shocked to see the rating for Collisions & Castaways is so low. I still really like that album, there are some crushing songs on that one. After one listen, I think I even like C&C more than this one, but this could come close.
I thought I'd miss Noonan's drumming more, but this new guy is awesome.

DrGonzo1937
Staff Reviewer
February 20th 2015


18181 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Man this album dragssss.

JohnFire
February 20th 2015


876 Comments


Btw is that Adam Jackson on Silencer? Man, I miss Twelve Tribes.

renegadestrings
February 20th 2015


1605 Comments


collisions & castaways
tide & takers
Time & trauma
36 & fists

seeing a formula here. Seeing as how i loved these guys up until 'collisions', i will give this a shot. i really want this band to succeed, but i'm just so doubtful this will be good. Persuasive review though.

renegadestrings
February 20th 2015


1605 Comments


Also, this review reads like a 4 or higher. It's well-written, but it doesn't highlight any faults to explain the 3.5 rating. Care to elucidate a bit?



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