Downington, PA’s Dinosaur Death Trap presses all of the right buttons on their debut, self-titled EP. Resplendent guitars, pitch-perfect vocals and a production quality beyond any rational expectation for an unsigned indie rock band, collectively serve as the foundation for a five-track release that feels as if its resided in your back pocket for years. Familiar and accessible, Dinosaur Death Trap’s is a sound that seems destined for an audience beyond the West-Philly suburb that the band calls home.
Opening track “Sticks and Mud” begins with the guttural growl of the bass on full reverb before collapsing into a cascade of perfectly layered “Aahs.” “Cause we don’t dress it up / We know where we’re from” lead singer Dylan Pennell croons with a nonchalant confidence. Keys twinkle beneath a clean, addictive guitar riff. And with that we’re off.
The centerpiece of the release, “Torchbearer” plays like a less-theatrical version of Conveyor’s “Mukraker.” Or maybe it’s just the repetition of each song’s three-syllable title. I don’t know, it’s late at night and my judgment is beginning to grow suspect. What I do know is this: Here, as throughout the release, Dinosaur Death Trap works in perfect balance. Each member of the five-piece weaves impeccably around the other.
With each successive spin, it seems all the more impossible that Dinosaur Death Trap EP is a first effort. It’s not that the music is overtly complex, but this is a sophisticated, thoughtful release from a group of guys who should still be fumbling around in search of their respective roles. Listen to “Sticks and Mud” below and name your price for a digital download of the EP via Bandcamp.
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Written by Rob Peoni