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Album Review

No one could ever accuse the Fall of Troy of being conventional. Manipulator, their second album with Albany's Equal Vision Records, is all over the place with fretboard workouts, elastic vocals and constantly shifting rhythms, all sewn together by the band's ability to start and stop on a dime regardless of the direction each member might individually be going. Manipulator always keeps listeners guessing, and the vocal range of these guys is ridiculously impressive. Between Thomas Erak and Tim Ward, the two effortlessly move up and down the scale of sweet, emo-core singing to high-pitched squeals to throaty shrieks without missing so much as a step navigating through the chaotic background. And through all of the post-hardcore freak-outs, prog rock noodling and keyboard touches, the band (which amazingly makes this sweet racket with just three members) manages to keep everything extremely fluid and relatively controlled. There are always melodic chunks of pop shimmering just below the surface, keeping the music wholly accessible and engaging in the face of the Fall of Troy's propensity for wandering into the unpredictable terrain of bands like the Blood Brothers. But what's even more impressive is that the still-young band's eccentric and complex arrangements actually have a method to them (Matt Bayles was the perfect producer to help them tighten things up), and they're not just stringing along random sections for the sake of being random. If the Fall of Troy is already at this level of playing (and barely able to now legally drink), the best part of Manipulator being so good is that the band seems to just be getting started. [The album contains a bonus disc of four live tracks.]


Formed: 2002 in Mukilteo, WA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Mathcore trio the Fall of Troy formed in Mukilteo, Washington in 2002. Singer/guitarist Thomas Erak, singer/bassist Tim Ward, and drummer Andrew Forsman previously collaborated in 30 Years War, a screamo outfit they formed with fellow high school classmate Mike Munro on guitar. After a pair of self-released 2002 EPs, Martyrs Among the Casualties and Live at the Paradox, Munro left the group, citing day-job commitments, and the remaining trio continued as the Fall of Troy, selecting the name as before...
Full Bio
Manipulator, The Fall of Troy
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