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Trigger @ The Boatman's Rest, Walsall (29/1/11)

posted 25 Jul 2011, 15:27 by Paul Woodward
I wasn’t ready and prepared to review tonight’s gig, presuming it would be mostly cover songs with maybe one or two originals – given that it was a pub gig for the band. I’ve been meaning to catch these guys live for a long while and with them literally playing down the road from me I took this opportunity just to check them out.
I have to say the pub was packed, which the band themselves seemed shocked to see but also obviously very pleased about! The songs they chose to cover were all well known and well loved “stadium rock” classics, which all got good responses. The shock tonight was how many originals they bunged into the set and not only did the pub show as much love for these songs as the originals but how damn good the Trigger songs are – where the hell have these guys been hiding!

The band does have a slight modern feel to them on some songs more so than others. The band to me seems to combine the powerful guitar presence of bands like Buckcherry, Hinder and Black Stone Cherry with big melodic rock choruses’ ala Bon Jovi, Journey and the Scorpions... I’m not sure what others felt but I actually thought the band shone far more on their own songs and captivated the Boatman’s regulars! These guys have a real way with melody and craft some very memorable moments – I think this is why they went down so well with a crowd mostly unaware of the band until now

I have to say I was quite impressed with the level of musicianship on offer here especially for a so called “Pub Band” which these guys are definitely not. I liked hearing Matt Wharton’s keyboard’s high in the mix and especially on the bands originals his input seemed just as essential as anyone else has to overall feel of Trigger. The young drummer also impressed most notably during his solo. Chris Hingley on guitars is definitely one to watch out for, proving he can throw out big dirty power chords with ease but can also just as easily provide more intricate riffs and impressive solos. Dan’s vocal does remind of a well known rock singer but for the life of me I can’t put my finger on it, but I think Sally is Trigger’s secret weapon! Sally sings backing vocals and occasional duet’s and her vocal presence enhances many of the melodies giving them more power whilst never distracting from Dan’s rock vocal!

Obviously the band were very laid back tonight, with this been a pub crowd there’s no pressure from the crowd to deliver or have hardened music critic’s demanding “impress me”, so tonight’s set was full of humour and if one word described the band it would be “Fun”. They came to entertain and that’s exactly what they did and they’ve definitely made a diehard fan out of me!

The first song they played was “Alone Tonight” which is a very commercial song with its sound harking back to the 80’s – I’d describe it as pure AOR bliss! Dan did seem a bit apologetic about the songs retro vibe but I say BRING IT ON! “Erased” has a very much harder guitar riff and a more definite modern rock feel, but the melodies involved especially on the chorus just hit all the right spots for me! “Synthetic Celebrity” is the band’s ode to X-factor and the fame for fames sake mind-set currently rife in this country. The song has a quirky and punky feel to it especially on the chorus, and the band seem to relish playing this song especially Dan & Sally who parodies Cheryl Cole during the song to many onlookers amusement! A tongue in cheek song which allows the band to voice their opinions on the whole fame culture.

“Can’t Save The World” was a jaw dropping moment for me, and left me wondering how the hell these guys are not better known! The song is very commercial and has a melodic rock chorus many bands on labels would sell there grannies for and I was also impressed with Chris guitar work throughout this song. Catchy as hell doesn’t sum up this song enough which just oozes brilliance and a demand for repeat plays! “Heart Of Fire” is another song which has a slight modern feel to it but has a hugely commercial feel to it and the chorus is another melodic masterpiece – in fact if I had one word to sum up the band it probably would be “commercial” they are radio friendly beyond belief! “Born To Fly” the last song shows Chris shine which is a big full on rocker in the vein of Buckcherry or Guns & Roses but with a better vocalist! It was an explosive song to finish their originals with.

The band play extensively around the West Midlands and Black Country and I strongly recommend going and seeing these guys perform. The guys a will be supporting legendary rockers Zodiac Mindwarp at Birmingham O2 Academy on the 22nd of March. If you can’t wait that long you can also catch them in the Black Country on the 11th Feb at The Red Lion, Wendsfield & 19th Feb at The Boathouse in Walsall. Check the Midlands Rocks gig guide for even more Trigger dates

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