NYC’s Caught In A Trap play tunes for the Working Man. You know the deal: Wake up and bust your ass for someone else’s dollar, deal with the ridiculousness of corrupt politicians (who have more money and power than you’ll ever have) all trying to tell you what is what, grinding out the days at work, going to sleep, getting up the following day, and dealing with the same shit as before.
Fast, hard, and gruff, C.I.A.T. lets all these feelings go in a punchy 12-song blitz of aggression on their new album, Goodnight New York. This record drops on January 28th via Dead City Records, and you can head right over HERE to scoop it. Pad the walls and jump around… It’s 21 minutes of break-shit anthems!
I caught up with vocalist Rich Fie via email to talk about Caught In A Trap’s history, new album, and what they’ve got up their Big Apple sleeves for 2014.
G- Hi there and thank you very much for taking the time to speak with Live High Five! Introduce the members in the group… Who is everyone, what do they play, and where does everyone come from?
R- Thanks for the opportunity to speak about the record. I am Rich Fie, vocals for Caught In A Trap, and our band consists of myself on vocals, Paulie on guitar, Jay on drums and 6-pack Jonny on the bass. We are from all parts of New York City.
G- How long has Caught In A Trap been around and when did you first get started? Do you remember the moment that you really felt the group “click?”
R- C.I.A.T. has been around since 2004/05ish I guess. The current lineup has been together since ‘06. Jay, Paulie and I really clicked as a unit as soon as we got into the studio. We had a couple of different bass players early on. One show we were playing in Queens was our old bass player’s last show. We covered a Sheer Terror song and 6-pack Jon came running up out of the crowd and sang along (which is extremely out of character for Jon). I had played in a band with Jon for a short while in the EARLY 90’s when we were teenagers and had rarely seen him since.
So since our bass player was leaving, we asked Jon if he would be down to play with us…. He never even “tried out;” We just told him he was in….that’s when the band really clicked!!
G- You are releasing your latest album, Goodnight New York, on Dead City Records, January 28th. How do you feel about the final product, and what is it like working with Dead City Records?
R- We are really excited about the final product… It’s the best shit I personally have ever been a part of. Jay Is also in Yuppicide who released their last EP with DEAD CITY. Glen Lorieo who produced and engineered the record (he also did the aforementioned Yuppicide American Oblivion EP) plays drums in No Redeeming Social Value (also on DEAD CITY). So, we had quite a few “lifelines” to DEAD CITY.
To be completely honest DEAD CITY is the only label we ever even showed the record to. We basically finished up the record and sent it directly to DCR. It’s the label we WANTED to put our record out. It’s run by a real deal dude who is actually into/plays hardcore and all of us in the band respect the dude. So we are EXTREMELY happy John from Dead City wanted to put it out…It’s been awesome working with him
G- Can you tell us about the recording process for the album? Where did you record it, who was behind the boards this time around, and how long did the release take to record and get ready for release?
R- Glen Lorieo produced and engineered the record for us. It was real cool working with Glen. We recorded our first record with Don Fury and it was awesome to work with such a legendary producer. For that particular record (Rats Get Fat in 2007,) which was a REALLY straightforward NYHC punk record, Don was the perfect match.
On this record, we stretched a little. We stayed true to out hardcore roots, but we thought a bit out of the box at times, and Glen was perfect for this. If you’ve never met Glen, he’s a dude with a pretty epic afro, so if the band saw the afro swaying side to side to the music behind the mixing board, then we KNEW we were “in the groove” hahahaa.
He played producer and engineer on the record AND has been helping behind the scenes with Dead City on the release of the album… He’s a real good cat and the band is proud to call him a friend!!
We finished the record about the early/middle of 2013 and it’s coming out in January 28th, 2014 so we’ve had many months to prepare for the release.
G- What are you personally listening to these days? Any new bands caught your eye recently that you can hip us to?
R- To be honest, I don’t listen to a lot of “new” hardcore. There are a bunch of bands we play with a lot locally that I really dig. Right now in my car, as far as hardcore goes, I believe I got ABJECT! (RIP), ON THE OFFENSE, RAZORBLADE HANDGRENADE and REASON ENOUGH CDs in my car. But to be honest, I listen to a very eclectic mix of music….a lot of obscure 80’s hip hop, a lot of Sinatra and a lot of Doo Wop plays in my Cadillac!!!! hahaha
G- What do you guys have in the works in terms of shows coming up? Any plans to tour the record, or any weekend warrior type of stuff you can hip us to for the near future?
R- We definitely plan to tour for the record, hopefully making it to Europe for at least 10 days at some point in 2014, plus a lot of weekend van trips. We will be having an official record release show in March that will be announced soon!!
G- 4 albums every fan of you should know about and why. Go!
R- Okay in no particular order:
Sick Of It All – Blood Sweat and No Tears
Warzone – Don’t Forget The Struggle
Bad Brains – Self-titled first record
Beastie Boys – Paul’s Boutique
Honorable mention: Leeway – Desperate Measures
Sick Of It All cause it’s the first hardcore record to be THAT HARD and violent BUT never having to really go for the standard “BEATDOWN” riff. It was just so fast and so aggressive.
Warzone’s Don’t Forget The Streets because it was the quintessential “we are family” record for the hardcore scene. The record (and warzone’s live shows) really took any preconceived notions of rock stardom out of music for me… These were just dudes that played music and that was it…. There was no separation between the stage and the crowd. It sounds corny but to me, as a young teenager, it was like the most mind-blowing thing.
Bad Brains…..because they started this shit!!!! And, in my humble opinion, still probably the best hardcore band EVER!!
Paul’s Boutique by the Beastie Boys is just my personal favorite record of all time….Probably one of the most innovative records of all time!!
And yes I like Leeway’s Desperate Measures more than Born to Expire. Even though that is sacrilegious
G- Do you have a favorite song you have ever written? If you could only give 1 song to someone who’d never heard of you before, to try and make a new fan, what song would you give them and why?
R- “Goodnight New York” is like my opus/tribute/love Song/breakup song to NYC. I really love that song lyrically. NYC is being gentrified at an alarming rate. I am, at my essence, a New Yorker. I don’t identify with being an American as much as I identify with being a New Yorker. So to see all these artsy kids from the Midwest taking over places like Brooklyn & Harlem makes me sick to my stomach. All the great old mom and pop stores in NY are quickly being replaced by soulless chain stores. It’s really a sad state of affairs. So that was the reasoning behind writing that song… To tell people, “Hey, there are still real native New Yorkers here, the knock-around guys from the neighborhood are still here and we ain’t happy about this shit!!!”
G- What’s your feasible 4 band dream bill to be a part of if you could pick out the lineup yourself? Are there any bands or artists that you hope to share a bill with in the future?
R- RUN-DMC, The Ramones, Murphy’s Law, and Caught In A Trap at the old Shea Stadium. All Queens, NY band at an epic Queens Landmark!!!! I saw the word “feasible” after I answered the question. This show is actually completely UNFEASIBLE, since one of the members of RUN DMC is dead, most of the Ramones are dead and Shea Stadium is a parking lot!!!
G- Still be a badass show though! And on that note, what is the craziest or most memorable show that you have played to date? Where was it and what was it like?
R- Our record release show for Rats Get Fat in 2007 was probably the craziest show we ever played. There were 13 bands, a HUGE BBQ and the kids were bouncing off the walls from the first minute to the last. We threw the show ourselves, so we were responsible for cleaning up the venue afterward. Me and my drummer Jay were there when everyone was gone. We looked at the floor and it was COVERED in broken glass, booze and blood… We looked at each other and simultaneously said to each other “I guess we throw a good show!!!!” Ha!
G- Lastly, what advice can you give some of the young, up and coming bands everywhere who want to make it in music, on the road, and as a professional musician?
R- Get a job!!! Music is art. If you happen to make a living off it, it’s pure luck and you will probably have to compromise just about everything you believe in to “make it”. Make music for yourself and if people dig it, cool. If they don’t then fuck ‘em!!!