Siberian Traps
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Siberian Traps

Fort Worth, TX | Established. Jan 01, 2010 | SELF

Fort Worth, TX | SELF
Established on Jan, 2010
Band Rock Art Rock

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This band hasn't logged any future gigs

Sep
14
Siberian Traps @ Shipping & Recieving

Fort Worth, Texas, USA

Fort Worth, Texas, USA

Sep
07
Siberian Traps @ J&J Blues Bar

Fort Worth, Texas, USA

Fort Worth, Texas, USA

Aug
31
Siberian Traps @ Zio Carlo's

Fort Worth, Texas, USA

Fort Worth, Texas, USA

This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos

Music

Press


First up live was the Nashville transplant band Siberian Traps. One of the live audio guys and Matt behind the bar both gave me a heads up that I needed to pay close attention to this band.

Playing songs off their newest release Blackfoot and previous releases, the Traps bring a mello-groove that hints at a frontier native-rock vibe with plenty of dynamic kicks and punches to keep it live for the crowd. Seth Reeves (vocals/guitar) and Parker Donaldson (guitar, vox, synth) bring a solid front man/lead guitar look to the band that rounds out well with Peter Wierenga (Drums) and Mike Best (Bass).

Be sure to check out track number 10 from the Blackfoot album featuring Mackenzie Scott aka: TORRES on harmony vocals. - Good Bamm Sho


First up live was the Nashville transplant band Siberian Traps. One of the live audio guys and Matt behind the bar both gave me a heads up that I needed to pay close attention to this band.

Playing songs off their newest release Blackfoot and previous releases, the Traps bring a mello-groove that hints at a frontier native-rock vibe with plenty of dynamic kicks and punches to keep it live for the crowd. Seth Reeves (vocals/guitar) and Parker Donaldson (guitar, vox, synth) bring a solid front man/lead guitar look to the band that rounds out well with Peter Wierenga (Drums) and Mike Best (Bass).

Be sure to check out track number 10 from the Blackfoot album featuring Mackenzie Scott aka: TORRES on harmony vocals. - Good Bamm Sho


How many bands do you know of that could categorize their music as all of the following: Americana, Folk, Psychedelic, Rock and Roll? Probably not a ton. Siberian Traps feels that they hit all these points in their A Strange Loop EP and I can’t find a bit of room to disagree. I admittedly love the production quality – just above lo-fi and under glossy hi-fi and the songs are presented in a big wash of sound. I’d like to see how this holds up live and I may have my chance on March 25th at The End with their EP release party. - We Own This Town: Nashville


How many bands do you know of that could categorize their music as all of the following: Americana, Folk, Psychedelic, Rock and Roll? Probably not a ton. Siberian Traps feels that they hit all these points in their A Strange Loop EP and I can’t find a bit of room to disagree. I admittedly love the production quality – just above lo-fi and under glossy hi-fi and the songs are presented in a big wash of sound. I’d like to see how this holds up live and I may have my chance on March 25th at The End with their EP release party. - We Own This Town: Nashville


“There’s a world where I can go, and tell my secrets to,” sing the Beach Boys on the classic 1963 tune, In My Room. A beautiful ode to Brian Wilson’s sense of his own consciousness, and theoretically that room was what he ended up choosing over the band as he would eventually send them off to tour without him. When he was four years old, this song resonated with Seth Reeves, perhaps one could even call it the urtext for his future musical endeavors.

The first time I heard Mr. Reeves sing was at a packed Forest Park House party, he had just returned back to the Fort Worth area from Nashville. I heard a potent songwriter that night. Amidst the mayhem, he forced the rowdy crowd to quiet down and listen because his songs were compelling. I learned that night that his band would eventually be moving to our fair city, which only raised the sense of anticipation in the room.

Before getting into the arrival, I suppose I should start with his departure, the story that found him his band. At his heart, Reeves is an English teacher, and his career is big part of his life. He put that career on hold to venture out to Nashville to see where the songwriting thing would take him. Two other friends of Fort Live, Jake Paleschic and Joey Gorman, were also a part of this relocation. They went with no plan in mind, just a desire to follow the music.

One night at an anti-Valentine party, Reeves crossed paths with drummer Peter Wierenga and guitarist Parker Donaldson, a duo who perform under the clever moniker of Spider Friends, invoking Spiderman’s alter ego by their first names. Living with a group of songwriters and scrabbling to bring his songs to fruition, the band unified around Reeves particular style of writing, as Donaldson says, “Every time Seth brings us a new song, these are his meditations.”

I met up with Siberian Traps, complete with their fourth bass player Mike Best at the Royal Falcon Pub. Best also fulfills the low down needs of Donaldson and Wierenga’s friendly neighborhood band. “I’ve been power training every day to learn the songs for both bands.” With an easy smile and a friendly demeanor, Best seems a fine addition to the Traps. The discussion of learning the songs develops into a mild argument concerning how difficult the process is for each player, Wierenga, “When you realize the fingerprint of a songwriter, you are ultimately learning their mind.”

Having put out an EP in Nashville that they describe as “psychedelic revival,” which was produced by Peter, they have recorded their full-length, Blackfoot. The record evolves their initial sound fortified by their continued work into extremely lush compositions that engage their listeners beyond the individual parts, creating a “different type of American sound.” Reeves was inspired by a trip to South Dakota, sparking research into Crazy Horse and the Lakota tribe, resonating a theme of dislocation, “Where you have to take a journey that you haven’t necessarily signed up for, but you still have to walk it.”

The record should be out in the next couple of months, hopefully in the form of a Gatefold double LP. We will have more information on the release, as we get closer to the date. They’ve spent time streamlining the work and are excited to present the fruit of their labor, “The things we keep are the things we believe in.” - Fort Live


“There’s a world where I can go, and tell my secrets to,” sing the Beach Boys on the classic 1963 tune, In My Room. A beautiful ode to Brian Wilson’s sense of his own consciousness, and theoretically that room was what he ended up choosing over the band as he would eventually send them off to tour without him. When he was four years old, this song resonated with Seth Reeves, perhaps one could even call it the urtext for his future musical endeavors.

The first time I heard Mr. Reeves sing was at a packed Forest Park House party, he had just returned back to the Fort Worth area from Nashville. I heard a potent songwriter that night. Amidst the mayhem, he forced the rowdy crowd to quiet down and listen because his songs were compelling. I learned that night that his band would eventually be moving to our fair city, which only raised the sense of anticipation in the room.

Before getting into the arrival, I suppose I should start with his departure, the story that found him his band. At his heart, Reeves is an English teacher, and his career is big part of his life. He put that career on hold to venture out to Nashville to see where the songwriting thing would take him. Two other friends of Fort Live, Jake Paleschic and Joey Gorman, were also a part of this relocation. They went with no plan in mind, just a desire to follow the music.

One night at an anti-Valentine party, Reeves crossed paths with drummer Peter Wierenga and guitarist Parker Donaldson, a duo who perform under the clever moniker of Spider Friends, invoking Spiderman’s alter ego by their first names. Living with a group of songwriters and scrabbling to bring his songs to fruition, the band unified around Reeves particular style of writing, as Donaldson says, “Every time Seth brings us a new song, these are his meditations.”

I met up with Siberian Traps, complete with their fourth bass player Mike Best at the Royal Falcon Pub. Best also fulfills the low down needs of Donaldson and Wierenga’s friendly neighborhood band. “I’ve been power training every day to learn the songs for both bands.” With an easy smile and a friendly demeanor, Best seems a fine addition to the Traps. The discussion of learning the songs develops into a mild argument concerning how difficult the process is for each player, Wierenga, “When you realize the fingerprint of a songwriter, you are ultimately learning their mind.”

Having put out an EP in Nashville that they describe as “psychedelic revival,” which was produced by Peter, they have recorded their full-length, Blackfoot. The record evolves their initial sound fortified by their continued work into extremely lush compositions that engage their listeners beyond the individual parts, creating a “different type of American sound.” Reeves was inspired by a trip to South Dakota, sparking research into Crazy Horse and the Lakota tribe, resonating a theme of dislocation, “Where you have to take a journey that you haven’t necessarily signed up for, but you still have to walk it.”

The record should be out in the next couple of months, hopefully in the form of a Gatefold double LP. We will have more information on the release, as we get closer to the date. They’ve spent time streamlining the work and are excited to present the fruit of their labor, “The things we keep are the things we believe in.” - Fort Live


Seth Reeves does a near-flawless impersonation of former President George W. Bush. The secret to the imitation, said the frontman to Fort Worth alt-country stylists Siberian Traps, is to state some platitude as if you’ve just said something profound.

“Every country in the world wants freedom,” he said, mimicking the former president’s twang and mannerisms during an interview at a Near Southside coffeeshop.

When asked about Siberian Traps, Reeves became more thoughtful. The band isn’t just an excuse for some friends to get together, have fun, and drink some beer. The Fort Worth quartet, purveying what Reeves called “psychedelic cowboy rock ’n’ roll,” is polished and well-traveled. The guys work hard, gigging and recording seemingly nonstop.

“We don’t sound like anyone else,” Reeves said. “I know that is kind of cliché to say, but when you consider everything that everyone contributes to the band, it makes our sound distinct.”

The Traps’ music is a mélange of intense, crisp rhythms and complex, layered melodies. Reeves’ voice is naturally dramatic. He delivers his smart lyrics in a terse quaver, reminiscent of My Morning Jacket’s Jim James (but without whipping his hair around). Reeves’ subject matter is often rooted in a setting, real or imagined, and is usually autobiographical.

“I have a strong sense of place, whether it’s a neighborhood in Fort Worth or some kind of scene in my head,” he said.

Reeves writes the songs, but each player comes up with his own parts. “If it’s not a song I could perform with an acoustic guitar, then I wouldn’t show it to them,” Reeves said, meaning that the tune has to be fundamentally solid. “I like collaborating, because I’m always anxious to see how a song is going to be transformed by the group and how it will undergo a metamorphosis once the group gets hold of it.”

Though Siberian Traps are new and still developing, the band has inspired nearly unheard-of levels of commitment and dedication from its members. Some of the guys have moved from Nashville to Fort Worth to keep the band together. With every move, the stake that each member has in Siberian Traps becomes greater.

In 2008, Reeves, a Burleson high school English teacher, decided to take his music career more seriously. He and a few other local musos, including Jake Paleschic and Joey Gorman, who would go on to form The Longshots, packed up and moved north to Nashville to pursue their dreams. “We knew people there and thought there might be some good opportunities,” Reeves said. “I liked the town, liked the vibe, and started playing solo shows.”

During a solo gig at a house party, Reeves met drummer Pete Wierenga. The two teamed up with guitarist Parker Donaldson and played as a trio around Nashville. Though the three clicked musically, they felt out of place in a music scene dominated by radio country and same-sounding bands.

“Nashville is a good place to start and get good, but there’s not a large enough support network for what we do,” Wierenga said. “We did all right, but things started leveling out. There was no growth.”

With the band stagnating in Music City, Reeves decided to move home for personal reasons. His bandmates soon joined him, due in part to their great experiences in Fort Worth while on tour.

“Everyone we’ve met has been supportive,” Wierenga said. “It’s been cool seeing how musicians help each other out. You support their projects, and they’ll support yours.”

The band picked up bassist Mike Best and began gigging. And gigging. Though they’ve been back in Fort Worth only a few months, Siberian Traps have already played some high-profile gigs, most notably at Lola’s Saloon and The Where House, and are digging into The Scene. The band’s song “Asheville” appears on Group Therapy Vol. 1, a compilation cassette tape released last week by Fort Worth record labels Lo-Life Recordings and Dreamy Soundz Records, home of the analog recording studio Dreamy Soundz (Fungi Girls, The Longshots, Year of the Bear). Siberian Traps also recorded an album, Blackfoot, in Nashville last spring and hope to release it over the next month or so. Reeves said the band plans on touring once the album is out.

As Dubya might have said, all the guys want, really, is freedom. - Fort Worth Weekly


Seth Reeves does a near-flawless impersonation of former President George W. Bush. The secret to the imitation, said the frontman to Fort Worth alt-country stylists Siberian Traps, is to state some platitude as if you’ve just said something profound.

“Every country in the world wants freedom,” he said, mimicking the former president’s twang and mannerisms during an interview at a Near Southside coffeeshop.

When asked about Siberian Traps, Reeves became more thoughtful. The band isn’t just an excuse for some friends to get together, have fun, and drink some beer. The Fort Worth quartet, purveying what Reeves called “psychedelic cowboy rock ’n’ roll,” is polished and well-traveled. The guys work hard, gigging and recording seemingly nonstop.

“We don’t sound like anyone else,” Reeves said. “I know that is kind of cliché to say, but when you consider everything that everyone contributes to the band, it makes our sound distinct.”

The Traps’ music is a mélange of intense, crisp rhythms and complex, layered melodies. Reeves’ voice is naturally dramatic. He delivers his smart lyrics in a terse quaver, reminiscent of My Morning Jacket’s Jim James (but without whipping his hair around). Reeves’ subject matter is often rooted in a setting, real or imagined, and is usually autobiographical.

“I have a strong sense of place, whether it’s a neighborhood in Fort Worth or some kind of scene in my head,” he said.

Reeves writes the songs, but each player comes up with his own parts. “If it’s not a song I could perform with an acoustic guitar, then I wouldn’t show it to them,” Reeves said, meaning that the tune has to be fundamentally solid. “I like collaborating, because I’m always anxious to see how a song is going to be transformed by the group and how it will undergo a metamorphosis once the group gets hold of it.”

Though Siberian Traps are new and still developing, the band has inspired nearly unheard-of levels of commitment and dedication from its members. Some of the guys have moved from Nashville to Fort Worth to keep the band together. With every move, the stake that each member has in Siberian Traps becomes greater.

In 2008, Reeves, a Burleson high school English teacher, decided to take his music career more seriously. He and a few other local musos, including Jake Paleschic and Joey Gorman, who would go on to form The Longshots, packed up and moved north to Nashville to pursue their dreams. “We knew people there and thought there might be some good opportunities,” Reeves said. “I liked the town, liked the vibe, and started playing solo shows.”

During a solo gig at a house party, Reeves met drummer Pete Wierenga. The two teamed up with guitarist Parker Donaldson and played as a trio around Nashville. Though the three clicked musically, they felt out of place in a music scene dominated by radio country and same-sounding bands.

“Nashville is a good place to start and get good, but there’s not a large enough support network for what we do,” Wierenga said. “We did all right, but things started leveling out. There was no growth.”

With the band stagnating in Music City, Reeves decided to move home for personal reasons. His bandmates soon joined him, due in part to their great experiences in Fort Worth while on tour.

“Everyone we’ve met has been supportive,” Wierenga said. “It’s been cool seeing how musicians help each other out. You support their projects, and they’ll support yours.”

The band picked up bassist Mike Best and began gigging. And gigging. Though they’ve been back in Fort Worth only a few months, Siberian Traps have already played some high-profile gigs, most notably at Lola’s Saloon and The Where House, and are digging into The Scene. The band’s song “Asheville” appears on Group Therapy Vol. 1, a compilation cassette tape released last week by Fort Worth record labels Lo-Life Recordings and Dreamy Soundz Records, home of the analog recording studio Dreamy Soundz (Fungi Girls, The Longshots, Year of the Bear). Siberian Traps also recorded an album, Blackfoot, in Nashville last spring and hope to release it over the next month or so. Reeves said the band plans on touring once the album is out.

As Dubya might have said, all the guys want, really, is freedom. - Fort Worth Weekly


Confusingly, Siberian Traps are from Texas, not the cold, inhospitable Russian region, famous for its gulags and… well, very little else actually.
We can’t imagine anywhere more different to Siberia than the always toasty American state, but genial frontman Seth Reeves offers a short – and genuinely interesting explanation as to the link below.
His band play an identifiably American brand of melodic rock, which would probably be absolute manna for Uncut readers with its blend of tuneful, country-flecked psychedelia that sits not a million miles away from My Morning Jacket.

We’re fans too and reckon the band’s debut album Blackfoot (featuring stomping single Comanche Moon and the interestingly-named Drunk Fishes and Paper Tigers) could be doing with a bigger audience. We caught up with Seth a short time ago.

So who the hell are you??

Siberian Traps is a four-piece rock and roll band from Fort Worth, Texas. We formed in Nashville, Tennessee in 2009 when I moved from Fort Worth to Nashville to pursue musical ambitions. Lead guitarist Parker Donaldson of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and drummer Peter Wierenga of Chicago, Illinois were also living in Nashville at the time and we started playing music together shortly after meeting through mutual friends. We recorded one EP in Nashville (A Strange Loop EP) and also finished our first full length record (Blackfoot) there shortly before I moved back to Fort Worth for family reasons. The rest of the band decided to follow, so we now all live and work in Fort Worth, including our bassist Mike Best, who joined Traps after we relocated.

Describe your sound in ten words or less!

Psychedelic Americana rock and roll played by twanged up mescaleros.

How did you guys come together to make music?

We met at a pretty wild Valentine’s Day house show in Nashville in 2009. I was a high school English teacher for several years, but I decided to move to Music City to see what might come of it in the way of musical opportunities. I was playing a solo set and drummer Pete Wierenga asked if he could hop on the drums and provide some simple accompaniment. I met Parker Donaldson the same night and within a few months, we were rehearsing full-band arrangements of my songs. We had a series of bass players in Nashville, mainly fellows who were pretty involved in other bands and projects, and we met our current bassist, Mike Best, when we relocated to Fort Worth in the Summer of 2012.

Siberian Traps? We’re pretty sure you’re not Russian??

Haha, no, though I was tempted to write that we’re diehard supporters of the Bolshevik Revolution or something. But to answer your question seriously, I’ve been fascinated with volcanism since I was a kid. The Siberian Traps were a massive, flood basalt eruption that occurred about 250 million years ago and lasted for around a million years. There’s evidence that the eruptions were the cause of the mass Permian-Triassic extinction. Mainly, I just liked the link to a childhood subject of fascination and the fact that it’s a fairly ambiguous name suggestive of other ideas such as Soviet Russia, gulags, or possibly animal trapping in the frozen wilds of the northlands. Not that we condone gulags or any such system of oppression.

What inspired the songs on Blackfoot?

I usually find I’m inspired by places. I think a lot about the way certain spaces feel, what emotions they invoke, what memories they call to mind. The landscapes of the American West occupy a pretty big spot in my mind, I’d say. I took a trip with a good friend in the Summer of 2011 to the Badlands of South Dakota and to the Pine Ridge Oglala Sioux Reservation there. It got me thinking a great deal about the history and plight of the American Indians. And about the theme of dislocation in general. A lot of my writing is from personal experience, but I’m always casting about for how that experience fits into the grander scheme of things. History and places usually give me some sort of lodestar for that.

Are there more recording plans or are you happy to keep spreading the word about Blackfoot for now?

We have the aforementioned debut recording, A Strange Loop EP, which we released in March of 2011. We’re focusing now on spreading the word about Blackfoot, which we’re pretty proud of. We also anticipate that later this year we’ll release an A/B side 7 inch vinyl with a couple of newer recordings. And we’re working on writing new material for our second full-length release, some of which we’re already working into our live sets.

Drunk Fishes and Paper Tigers – really??

Haha, yes really. A whimsical title for a song about an old flame that’s long burnt out. But I still like the song pretty well.

Any plans to hit the UK??

That’d be tremendous, but we have a lot of work to do to get our name and our music out there. I love the UK and would jump at the chance to tour there. - The Tidal Wave of Indifference


Confusingly, Siberian Traps are from Texas, not the cold, inhospitable Russian region, famous for its gulags and… well, very little else actually.
We can’t imagine anywhere more different to Siberia than the always toasty American state, but genial frontman Seth Reeves offers a short – and genuinely interesting explanation as to the link below.
His band play an identifiably American brand of melodic rock, which would probably be absolute manna for Uncut readers with its blend of tuneful, country-flecked psychedelia that sits not a million miles away from My Morning Jacket.

We’re fans too and reckon the band’s debut album Blackfoot (featuring stomping single Comanche Moon and the interestingly-named Drunk Fishes and Paper Tigers) could be doing with a bigger audience. We caught up with Seth a short time ago.

So who the hell are you??

Siberian Traps is a four-piece rock and roll band from Fort Worth, Texas. We formed in Nashville, Tennessee in 2009 when I moved from Fort Worth to Nashville to pursue musical ambitions. Lead guitarist Parker Donaldson of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and drummer Peter Wierenga of Chicago, Illinois were also living in Nashville at the time and we started playing music together shortly after meeting through mutual friends. We recorded one EP in Nashville (A Strange Loop EP) and also finished our first full length record (Blackfoot) there shortly before I moved back to Fort Worth for family reasons. The rest of the band decided to follow, so we now all live and work in Fort Worth, including our bassist Mike Best, who joined Traps after we relocated.

Describe your sound in ten words or less!

Psychedelic Americana rock and roll played by twanged up mescaleros.

How did you guys come together to make music?

We met at a pretty wild Valentine’s Day house show in Nashville in 2009. I was a high school English teacher for several years, but I decided to move to Music City to see what might come of it in the way of musical opportunities. I was playing a solo set and drummer Pete Wierenga asked if he could hop on the drums and provide some simple accompaniment. I met Parker Donaldson the same night and within a few months, we were rehearsing full-band arrangements of my songs. We had a series of bass players in Nashville, mainly fellows who were pretty involved in other bands and projects, and we met our current bassist, Mike Best, when we relocated to Fort Worth in the Summer of 2012.

Siberian Traps? We’re pretty sure you’re not Russian??

Haha, no, though I was tempted to write that we’re diehard supporters of the Bolshevik Revolution or something. But to answer your question seriously, I’ve been fascinated with volcanism since I was a kid. The Siberian Traps were a massive, flood basalt eruption that occurred about 250 million years ago and lasted for around a million years. There’s evidence that the eruptions were the cause of the mass Permian-Triassic extinction. Mainly, I just liked the link to a childhood subject of fascination and the fact that it’s a fairly ambiguous name suggestive of other ideas such as Soviet Russia, gulags, or possibly animal trapping in the frozen wilds of the northlands. Not that we condone gulags or any such system of oppression.

What inspired the songs on Blackfoot?

I usually find I’m inspired by places. I think a lot about the way certain spaces feel, what emotions they invoke, what memories they call to mind. The landscapes of the American West occupy a pretty big spot in my mind, I’d say. I took a trip with a good friend in the Summer of 2011 to the Badlands of South Dakota and to the Pine Ridge Oglala Sioux Reservation there. It got me thinking a great deal about the history and plight of the American Indians. And about the theme of dislocation in general. A lot of my writing is from personal experience, but I’m always casting about for how that experience fits into the grander scheme of things. History and places usually give me some sort of lodestar for that.

Are there more recording plans or are you happy to keep spreading the word about Blackfoot for now?

We have the aforementioned debut recording, A Strange Loop EP, which we released in March of 2011. We’re focusing now on spreading the word about Blackfoot, which we’re pretty proud of. We also anticipate that later this year we’ll release an A/B side 7 inch vinyl with a couple of newer recordings. And we’re working on writing new material for our second full-length release, some of which we’re already working into our live sets.

Drunk Fishes and Paper Tigers – really??

Haha, yes really. A whimsical title for a song about an old flame that’s long burnt out. But I still like the song pretty well.

Any plans to hit the UK??

That’d be tremendous, but we have a lot of work to do to get our name and our music out there. I love the UK and would jump at the chance to tour there. - The Tidal Wave of Indifference


Recently, a lot has been written –– in these pages, by Steve Steward (who can be e-mailed at “s-t-e-v-e …”) –– about Fort Worth’s perhaps perverse fascination with cover songs and tribute shows. Well, say what you will (Steve). I bet you never expected Fort Worth Rock Assembly to have an appreciable impact on not just any local band but a really, really awesome one.

Like most people with good taste, a high IQ, and rugged charm, Seth Reeves has always been a fan of early R.E.M. The old I.R.S. Records material. Murmur, Reckoning, Dead Letter Office. Y’know. The kind of stuff that when I was growing up in the latte-laden Northeast in the late ’80s represented Gap cardigans, umbrageous college campuses, flip haircuts, in-depth (read: not in-depth at all) Faulkner discussions, and, uh, lattes. Bourgeois? You decide (Steve). Anyway, when Reeves’ Siberian Traps were asked to participate in the 2013 version of the annual two-day event in which local bands pay tribute to past pop-musical greats, he quickly claimed R.E.M.

“It’s some of my favorite music,” he said. “Actually learning those songs and rehearsing and performing them gave me a sense of what you can do with a guitar, bass, and drums. That Americana twang with post-punk energy –– I think that sort of started me writing in a different direction.”

The Traps’ debut album had come out recently. Recorded in 2012 in Nashville, where Reeves, a native Fort Worthian and UNT grad, lived for a couple of years in the mid-aughts with lead guitarist Parker Donaldson, the lush and dynamic Blackfoot arrived around the same time as Frances Reeves, his and wife Katelyn Reeves’ daughter. A hiatus followed. Donaldson returned to Nashville. Drummer Pete Wierenga, who works for a local AmeriCorps project, began moonlighting with C&W singer-songwriter Jake Paleschic and produced the forthcoming debut album by the upstart post-punking Fluorescents at Eagle Audio Recording. Bassist Mike Best kept plugging away at Buffalo Bros, a TCU-area sports bar. And Reeves, senior AP English literature teacher at Centennial High School in Burleson, kept writing (while changing diapers and singing lullabies and doing laundry seemingly nonstop). His worshipful approach worked out.

“I said, ‘I’m going to try to write an R.E.M. song,’ ” he recalled. “Of course, I can’t do that. I’m not those guys. I found the best approach is to try to imitate that dead on. You won’t succeed, but something interesting might happen.”

What happened was a lot of straightforwardness. “The [new] songs are a little more direct, simpler,” he said. “Blackfoot was unconventional in structure and kind of elaborate in some ways. I think these songs are a little more straightforward and simpler both musically and lyrically, but I’m really happy with them in that regard. It feels like the right time to be a little more straightforward with what I’m trying to say in my music and writing.”

Reeves and company began playing a lot of their new material live. “After a few shows last fall and practicing quite a lot, [we said], ‘Well, might as well make another record,’ ” Reeves said. “I’m excited about the new songs. I think they’re the best we’ve ever written. [Recording them] felt like right thing to do rather than sit on them.”

The band has laid down tracks at several locations, including Eagle Audio, the home studio of Natural Anthem’s Jake Murphy, and Dreamy Soundz. “It just depends on who’s available,” Reeves said. “Some of it’s also going for a particular sound.”

Reeves expects to finish recording all eight songs by August. After that, he said, the Traps will go out on the road. Reeves, who is 37, and his bandmates, both upper twentysomethings, are hitting it hard at a good time, Reeves thinks. The Fort Worth scene has changed a little since Blackfoot. (Right, Steve?) “The most obvious is Leon Bridges’ breakout,” Reeves said. “Hey, maybe there’s a little more spotlight on Fort Worth. Maybe we can make something out of that. To me, it’s exciting.”

Reeves believes he sees part of the Leon Bridges Effect at work on Paleschic’s new album, Again, at Last. “I think Jake put out a great record,” Reeves said. “It seems to be reaching a wider audience. There’s a sense, at least I feel like it, that with increased attention, hey, it might be time to really get your name heard a little farther outside of 817. I think it’s good. I think it’s all really exciting.”

Siberian Traps’ next show is Friday with Denton indie-rockers RTB2 and The Demigs at Shipping & Receiving. - Fort Worth Weekly


Discography

Blackfoot (LP)
A Strange Loop (EP)
File Under: Demonstration (EP)
New Friend in Town (single)
"Asheville" on "Group Therapy" Vol. 1 Compilation, released by Lo-Life Recordings

Photos

Bio

I was standing in Live Oak Music Hall once with Mr. Seth Reeves - on the night Siberian Traps released Blackfoot and played a show so transcendent the crowd checked to see if they were floating above the stage - when a fine young man with a handle bar mustache asked me about these boys late of Nashville and lately of Fort Worth. What did they sound like, he asked me, what was their style, who were their influences? (Such was the anticipation that the uninitiated started groping for answers.) I deferred to Mr. Reeves, standing at my left – who should have known better than anyone, as their chief songwriter, vocalist and guitarist. He thought about it briefly and said, “We sound like a cowboy riding into the desert on a mescaline trip.” The man and I both stood silent for a moment, and then I started laughing, clapping my hands.

I was certainly delighted at the time, but I’ll be damned if that isn’t the perfect description of Siberian Traps. This is an Ennio Morricone soundtrack played by R.E.M., produced by Neil Young, in praise of the universe: a whole new genre I’d call Spirit Rock. It is music both spirited and of the spirit. You stomp your feet and you hum along; but if your self-same soul isn’t swinging along, too, then you’re not paying close enough attention. (Mr. Reeves is capable of crafting lyrics that mean something the first time, something else the tenth time, and something entirely new the ten thousandth.) This is sincere music, removed of any scene, brave enough to say what it means in a culture that’s afraid to mean anything.

Seth Reeves has been playing music in and around Fort Worth for a number of years, but his pilgrimage to Nashville in 2009 – and his meeting of drummer Peter Wierenga and guitarist Parker Donaldson – brought a whole new vision to the music. They returned to Texas with songs pastoral and psychological, lusty and spiritual: a union of opposites, sonic and otherwise, that represents a kind of transcendence. With the addition of Mike Best on bass in 2013, the band now brings a live sound that is one of the finest barnstorming rock and roll shows in this land. Their two releases to date, A Strange Loop EP and Blackfoot, are equally at home blasting from one’s car stereo or through your earphones, while your eyes are closed, as the pulsating landscape of an America that both is and isn’t rises up in the imagination.

So go ahead: take the trip, man, climb up on your horse and ride out into the desert, put the cactus hearts in the iron pot over your campfire, and listen to some Traps.

- Wade Lipham