Steel Train – Trampoline

Steel Train – Trampoline / 2007 Drive-Thru / 12 Tracks / / /

It has been well over two years since we had the chance to last review Steel Train, and while their last CD was nothing really that impressive, the band has gotten their shit together for “I Feel Weird”, the first track on “Trampoline”. Unlike many of the Drive-Thru bands, there is not that much of an emo sound permeating their music. Rather, what results during the aforementioned “I Feel Weird” is a rock style that has a current style to it but is also something that draws heavily on the rock of the eighties, when individuals like Tom Petty worked the later part of their careers.

This brand of rock is fun while not excluding anyone from listening in; Steel Train has something for everyone, no matter where the band is at on the disc. Thus, a track like “Black Eye” is very playful and links its fortunes with the overall sound of a Jane’s Addiction as well as an early Rolling Stone. It is hard to truly pin down Steel Train’s influences at points during “Trampoline”, and this only bodes well for the band. The guitar work on “Trampoline” is impressive, with the post-chorus guitar line of Steel Train orienting itself quite closely to Weezer playing the combined music from Beverly Hills 90210 and The Heights. Even as Steel Train goes back twenty years earlier in their influences present during “Kill Monsters in the Rain”, the impassioned vocals are more than enough to keep individuals interested throughout the entirety of the track. The song may not be one that will make it high on rock radio charts, but it works well in creating a specific sound for Steel Train on this album.

“Dakota” follows up that track, and Steel Train is able here to continue along with the general sound of “Kill Monsters in the Rain”, but marry that style to the post-Weezer style of a “I Feel Weird”. The chorus is perhaps the most catchy out of any on the disc, and despite the fact that Steel Train is working from a very seventies type of sound, the youth of today will be able to find something that they can appreciate here. Steel Train has evolved considerably in the last few years, and while they may not be on the level of a Two Gallants or Defiance Ohio just yet, the brand of rock that Steel Train brings to the fore is very impressive on its own right.

Top Tracks: A Magazine, I’ve Let You Go

Rating: 6.8/10

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Author: James McQuiston

Ph.D. in Political Science, Kent State University. I have been the editor at NeuFutur / since I was 15. Looking for new staff members all the time; email me if you are interested. Thanks!

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