Black Trip

Album Title: 
Goin' Under
Release Date: 
Monday, July 7, 2014
Review Type: 

Although this Stockholm based Swedish retro Heavy Metal band was formed only recently, as a result of a conversation between Peter Stjärnvind (veteran of the Swedish Metal scene, with a history in the bands Face Down, Entombed, Unanimated, Regurgitate, Nifelheim, Merciless, Damnation, Born Of Fire, and currently still also active with Pest, Murder Squad and Krux) and Joseph Tholl (now also still guitarist for Enforcer and Corrupt, and formerly of Hazard, Joseph Tholl And The Escapades, CC Company, and Corrupted) in the backstage of a German festival, somewhere in Spring 2011 (during which the two discussed their all-time favourite NWoBHM singers, and Tholl eventually admitted that he'd long had ambitions to be the singer in a band – which decided the two to start the project there and then!), the idea had been lingering about in Stjärnvind's mind much longer!

In fact, the idea went back to 2003, and it wasn't just an idea at that either. Back then, he was still mainly a drummer, and hanging out with fellow drummer mate Daniel Bergqvist (formerly of Wolf) the two decided to start up a new band by the name of Black Trip (hence forward abbreviated to BT), playing music which harkened back to the stuff that they had both grown up with. Stjärnvind picked up the guitar, and the duo set forth to writing material and even recording early rough demos...but in the end nothing really came off the project, and it died a silent death. But “death” is an exaggerated word in this context, and in fact the project was actually simply put to sleep, and the later course of events would proove! In order to compete the line-up of their new band, Stjärnvind looked back to his past collaborations, which resulted in the induction of his former Nifelheim buddies, guitarist Sebastian Ramstedt (whom had after Nifelheim also played in Necrophobic, Exhumed and Morpheus, and who's currently also still active in Ordo Inferus) and bassist Johan Bergebäck (had been in Dismember prior to joining Nifelheim, and has since been with Necrophobic, Exhumed and Morpeus, alongside Ramstedt). To complete the line-up, Tholl called on his Enforcer buddy, drummer Jonas Wickstand (also a mmber of Stälbritta, and formerly of Hazard – where the two first met – and Leprosy).

What with the reputations of the people involved, the band raised quite a stir in the journalistic side of the music scene in Sweden, and this probably helped a lot in gaining the band a worthwhile label contract outside Scandinavia! That, and of course the Tvár Dábla single the band released in 2012 through the small Primitive Art Records imprint. In fact, the full-length was already released far earlier in Scandinavia (with Threeman Recordings issuing the album back on October 23, 2013), and the band has already gone on to record and release the split single (7-inch, green transparent vinyl) Would Not Be Seen Dead In Heaven / Outlaw (the latter song by BT) with Dead Lord through Lightning Records on Sept. 9 of last.

But, goin' back (no pun intended on the album's title) to the album at hand, and a couple of citations from the info sheet which accompanied the download promo of the album : “...In the true spirit of NWoBHM, there's not one single filler on the album, each and every track is a killer song in its own right...” [a statement to which I fully agree] “...All songs were written by Stjärnvind and Tholl, and the influences couldn't be more clear; it's classic NWoBHM bands like Iron Maiden and Saxon, whose heavy riffs have always been paired with impeccable sense of melody, but there's also a hint of the slightly bluesier sensibilities of Thin Lizzy and the dirty attitude of the '70s era Scorpions...” [which is a funny statement, because personally, I felt that Thin Lizzy was the basis from which the band started, and this was certainly due to Tholl's slightly hoarse-sounding voice (doesn't quite compare to Phil Lynott's, but what with the great guitar play sóme reminiscences did occur, you know). Then, for sure, it's hard to deny the additional Iron Maiden influence, and some of the songs have a darker side which is closer to Maiden than it is to Lizzy]. Funny detail : the Tvár Dábla single did nót have a song on it entitled that way, but the album doés!

End conclusion : anyone with affinities to the NWoBHM sound should at least get acquainted with the music of this band, and at (www.), you'll not only be able to listen to the aforementioned early single by the band, but also to view the music video for the album's song “Radar”. Also there are links to SoundcloudSpotify and facebook (the latter displaying the same three songs as on the band's own website). Check it out asap, and possibly get yourself a vinyl copy of the album to make the “retro” feel complete!