When I sat down to review this record, I thought I’d browse the web to see what other people have said about Canyoneer. It only took a few minutes for me to realize that people know absolutely nothing about this band, and some of the reviews I read were so under-researched and inadequate that it actually made me upset. One website even went so far as to call No Trigger a “more scene Rise Against.” It is with these reviews in mind that I felt justice must be done to such an incredible band and release. And trust me, there’s nothing overtly “scene” about No Trigger – they’re more like a balls to the wall fusion of punk, melody, and hardcore. No Trigger shouldn’t be viewed as an aspiring band in comparison to Rise Against when they’ve already created a record that rivals anything Rise Against has ever created.
No Trigger is just one of many upstart bands leading the punk revival on Nitro Records, along with labelmates A Wilhelm Scream and a vast array of excellent bands redefining a genre that has been overshadowed over the past several years. No Trigger possesses the unique gift of creating instantly memorable songs without sacrificing a bit of artistic integrity, energy, or uniqueness. You won’t find any ballads on Canyoneer – in fact, one of its strongest aspects is its nonstop barrage of energy and fist-pumping anthems. Songs like “The Honshu Underground” and “Neon National Park” meld hardcore-infused verses effortlessly into driving, melodic choruses. Other songs display an impressive array of guitar licks, such as the incorporation of a post-chorus metal-infused riff into a bridge, which transitions well into yet another verse in “Hail Mary Leaky.” It’d be impossible to describe all the little things No Trigger does on this record, but the point is that minor things in their instrumentation and transitions make each song memorable and add a significant amount of lasting value. “More to Offer” coincidently offers up the most variation on the entire record, with female backing vocals and awesome guitar harmonies.
The criticisms for Canyoneer are few and far between. The lasting value of this record, while extended by subtle instrumentation, is not outstanding. It is, at its core, a fairly straightforward punk/hardcore record, even though it is insanely catchy and mosh-worthy. While they’re doing what they do better than anyone else I’ve heard since Marathon (R.I.P.), this Massachusetts 5-piece still has no limit as to what they can achieve in the future. Canyoneer is a huge step forward from their 2004 EP Extinction in Stereo, so one can only dream of what comes next for No Trigger. Until then, go pick up Canyoneer and enjoy one of the year’s best releases.