Black Trip [Sweden]
The breaking out of The Dagger this year with their debut album left me absolutely hooked onto the proto-heavy metal that seems to be the trend of late. A friend then recommended Black Trip to me, remarking how similar they are to The Dagger, and possibly even better. After a long indulgence in The Dagger, I finally decided to take my first listen to Goin’ Under, and boy was I in for a nice ride.
From the first riffs of Voodoo Queen, the similarities between Black Trip and The Dagger are immediately obvious, as the musical style of both bands are a throwback to the era between the 60s and the 80s, ranging from the hard rock of bands like Deep Purple and Rainbow to the early heavy metal of Iron Maiden and the likes. There are even some resemblances to other recent bands such as Ghost as well with that slight psychedelic charm that the band presents throughout the album.
The one thing that particularly stood out for me was Joseph Tholl’s vocals, who for me bore rather striking similarities to the works of Paul Di’Anno and his time with Maiden, especially in the way he belts out the lyrics, like on Radar (and his “yeah, yeah yeah”s). This resulted in the heavy comparisons with the heavy metal legends, and there are moments where Black Trip sounds like what having Paul Di’Anno on a Deep Purple record would sound like. No Tomorrow, with the riffs of Peter and Sebastian easily brings one back to the debut full length of Maiden.
Looking at the lineup of the band, it is hardly surprising how addictive Black Trip was, comprising two members of yet another of my personal favourite heavy metallers, Enforcer. While genre-wise Enforcer and Black Trip may share the same tag, these two bands have managed to stay remarkably different, each presenting a different era of the heavy metal history.
Once again, the Swedes prove their musical prowess. If one were like me, a newly minted fan of The Dagger, and looking for something slightly heavier, look no further than Black Trip and their debut Goin’ Under for a nice fix of early heavy metal.