Sometimes creativity comes in spurts. It's something the creator can't control. It keeps sleep at bay with its assiduous work ethic. Other artists seem to be freakishly prolific unable keep the dyke from breaking, producing material at a breakneck pace. Bob Pollard, between GBV and other side projects, seemed to be putting out something every other week. Guns and Roses to Radiohead have had to separate recording sessions into multiple releases. These floods spawned the notion that double CD releases are epic and a must-have for any serious music fan. In this vein, Traindodge has assembled The Truth, a one hundred twenty minute two-disc release scheduled to be out in September on Ascetic records.
The Truth is filled with powerful post-rock/rock hooks. The opening track "Abandon City!" begins with over a minute of samples. The sparseness of the recording makes the buildups much more powerful when they come, and these guys show a penchant for crunchy, driving rock.
The first disc opens with "Abandon City!" — a track takes too long to establish itself and despite having great moments, like many of the songs on this release, ultimately loses the listener. Conversely, "Dealing With A Liar", one of the shortest tracks on the CD, grabs hold and never lets go. The song eerily creeps in and out of your speakers leaving you to believe it will explode at any moment but it never does. Other songs such as "Success Has A 1,000 Feathers" and "Failure is An Orphan" show a great deal of potential but they manage to resist inertia. The songs have moments that lead you to expect something great is around the corner. Unfortunately it's just a tease. On "Failure Is An Orphan" there is a long vaporous portion of the song that bit-by-bit grows into something that makes the listener think they will be rewarded for their steadfast devotion only to be bamboozled when Traindodge is possessed by Boston — the band, not the city.
The second disc picks up the pace and does a much better job of rewarding the listener for their determination. The first track "Love and Venom" wastes no time. Kicking in with a bit of feedback, followed by consuming crisp guitars, a driving rhythm section, lush synthesizers and emotional vocals. "Bushido" has a forceful ebb and flow that makes you want to get up and do something-anything. The longer songs on the second disc seem to drag less and be less self-indulgent-taking the listener on a much happier jaunt.
Although it is a bit painful to be critical of this record because there are so many bright spots and the band shows moments of brilliance in their writing and delivery, they also manage to shoot themselves just when you think you're listening to the next great thing to come down the pike. There are a number of tracks that should have been altered or excised. If it weren't for that this would be a record to write home about.