By Peter Partoza

As per usual, a new week means new music hitting the airwaves. Coming fresh off of a much-anticipated wait, Twenty One Pilots dropped their new album “Trench.” The full album comes after a 3-year hiatus, and delivers 56 more minutes of emo pop for fans to enjoy. In addition to releasing the album, the group announced a tour that almost immediately sold out in all cities, and they released a new line of “Trench”-themed merchandise. 

Many of the songs bring you back to the original Twenty One Pilots sound, lighthearted harmony with a driving drum set and Tyler Joseph’s unmistakable voice. Switching between falsetto vocals and spoken word lyric styles, the new album is refreshing, but it feels like it’s missing something. The initial two songs of the album have a harder rock sound to them and the record starts off with a great hook, suggesting a departure from their traditional sound, but Twenty One Pilots quickly return to older form after just a taste of the new and improved that could have been. 

I am personally conflicted with this album. On one side, I enjoy the harder rock sound they featured in “Levitate” and “Jumpsuit” and want to hear more of the like. On the other side I’m glad that they’re back with more material that resembles their “Blurryface” album. That aside, there are plenty of things to praise: the lyric writing, the sound editing, and the overall feeling of the album, each song having its own story and commentary on life. 

One particular song that truly resonated with me was “Neon Gravestones.” The song speaks on the way our current culture treats death, especially with celebrities, often seeing these high-profile deaths as a way to increase reputation. In the song Tyler Joseph asks his fans to promise, “If I lose to myself, you won’t mourn a day, and you’ll move on to someone else” refusing to let his death be glorified, and instead celebrating the life that was lived. Though it may not be everyone’s favorite kind of music, I still recommend it. The album is timely with World Mental Health day just passing on Oct. 10, and I appreciate the lyrical contribution to the ongoing dialogue about mental health. 

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