Album Review: The Traders – “Too Young… So Old”

When I first listened to The Traders’ new album “Too Young… So Old,” I got three tracks into it and I turned it off. The French band’s debut album was abrasive and disjointed. I kind of dreaded having to listen to it a few more times to review it.

But this album is the definition of a grower.

On my third or fourth listen through, I was transported back to my first year out of high school, driving around in my car, blowing out my speakers to “Dancing for Decadence” by the Sainte Catherines, by far my favorite album of 2006. I swear I am not making this comparison because they’re both from French-speaking areas, there is serious overlap in the sound between the bands. The raw, yelling vocals, the melodic guitar, even the guitar tone harkens back to the late Ontario punks. And it rules. The album’s first two tracks blow me out of the water, being that perfect mix of angry, modern punk and dirty, 80s metal that was almost popular in the late 2000s, but never really took off. I also hear some Glass and Ashes in here, and I’m loving that as well.

As a lot of albums do, the sustained blast that is the first half of “Too Young… So Old” gives way to a more subdued, poppy second half. The record features an acoustic track, as well as stuff that is a lot cleaner and melodic. These tracks are still great, particularly “Black Page Syndrome” and the title track, “Too Young… So Old,” but dude, if the whole album had been an assault like the first few tracks, this thing would be damn near perfect.

I would definitely recommend this album to anyone who’s still mourning the demise of the Sainte Catherines, digs Glass and Ashes, or really wishes Motorhead was on No Idea.

4/5 Stars

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