Vaughn Trapp - Songs of the Great Depression - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Vaughn Trapp - Songs of the Great Depression

by James Bray Rating:5.5 Release Date:2011-05-01

The first thing that connects, when listening to Vaughn Trapp, is that it sounds like a Beatles tribute act that has just released its first album of original material. Much of these decent but unremarkable songs sound like they derive from mid-period Beatles' albums.
Songs of the Great Depression is competently produced and Doug Hammond, the singer-songwriter behind Vaughn Trapp, is obviously well versed in the conventions and mechanics of classic pop-rock. Hammond is a veteran of Californian indie-pop group Suncatcher; the songs on this solo effort all have a familiar template, with harmonies, choruses, bridges and break-downs all feeling reassuringly familiar. However, the overall impression is that the album is too safe, and that it adheres too closely to the appropriate register of American pop-rock stations.

Not too force a point, but Hammond does sound like Paul McCartney in his uncle at a wedding role, or John Lennon via San Diego. The problem with this kind of musical style is that The Beatles have set the bar pretty high, so Hammond's compositions seem quite insignificant in comparison. The melodies sound like they were created in some songwriting class, and the lyrics sound like they were penned next door at the creative writing class. However, in spite of this, Hammond does have a certain amount of talent, and a gift for of song-craft. If you think you would like sub-Beatles pop-rock which sounds a bit like Eels, this could be for you.

Overall Rating (0)

0 out of 5 stars
  • "Bray" is an apt name for such an asinine review.
    I don't know what prism Bray passed VT's music through (Dokken? Pussy Galore? The Eels??) but it's like reading a 50 Cent review of Travis Tritt.
    The whole point of Vaughn Trapp is defiance of genre in deference to the SONG.
    There are approximately TWO songs on "Songs Of The Great Depression" that reference the Beatles or (Badfinger as the case may be) the rest are exercises in Songwriting with a capital "S" that range from goth-country, 70's biker rock to neo-Folk!
    Why do I have the feeling mr. Bray ripped through 10 reviews in one sitting? It seems he checked out the first track, googled for 2 minutes and extrapolated this waste of space review. "sub-Beatles pop-rock which sounds a bit like Eels"....Roll over Lester Bangs!
    It's a shame musicians of Mr Trapp's caliber have to put up with lazy music "journalism" like Bray's.

  • Or... Maybe James just had a different opinion to yours? No, what an insane idea! He must be an incompetent writer who bashed through a load of reviews without even listening to the music. Yes, that's it! Straw man agrument a-hoy!

  • are you Bray's sock puppet?
    the dude let Google right his article, I'd bet money on.
    Why? He mentions NO SONGS by name and the Beatles comparison applies to maybe the 1st song. (VT has a blog and he refers to"Badfinger" on that one)
    Just check out "Permanent Plan "B" and tell me if you here the B's or the Eels(!?) by the way...WTF
    VT may be unknown but that's no reason to phone in a review of someone this good.

  • I'm his editor. And as such I can assure you he did not let Google *w*rite his article. Have you used Google? You seem to be confused as to the service it offers. It's a search engine, not a random critical appraisal generator. I would suggest you were a PR for Vaughn Trapp if your spelling and grammar weren't so poor.

  • I would go further and suggest you are Vaughn Trapp. The problem with reviewing the lesser known artists on this site is that the artist tends to leave comments when they don't ike the review.

    Take the review for what it is, one person's opinion, then get over it and either stop making music, or get better at it.

  • hey jojo
    chill.
    i agree with you kinda. I like retro stuff myself, black keys, raphael saddiq, duffy etc and I think vaughn trapp's stuff is pretty good actually but there is a beatles quality to some of it -"The boy with his shoes tied on" especially-me like-....5.5 seems too low a rating to me too but you don't have to jump down the guys throat.