Review Summary: Crusty.
Somewhere in a filth ridden back alley, a drug addict looks to get his fix from a syringe that he found covered in blood at the bottom of a dumpster. Brooklyn, New York’s Unearthly Trance seem to have seen it all; the decay and shambles of major urban centre living coupled with the ongoing struggles of everyday life filled with drug dealers, prostitutes and low lifes. Sound familiar? If you think this is Martin Scorsese’s masterpiece 'Taxi Driver'
that I’m describing, you’re undoubtedly not too far off. In all actuality, Unearthly Trance’s The Trident
could very well be the perfect soundtrack to this and any movie that depicts such grisly images of humanity gone oh-so-very-***ing-wrong. The Trident
is a boot to the head that just keeps on kicking.
What’s wonderful about having a slightly darker sense of reality is that it can bring out some of best performances from any musician. Throughout the listening experience of The Trident
, you can definitely hear the bands urban surroundings rubbing off on them, clustering into a filth-ridden, crusty buttcrack that takes all the best parts of sludge, doom, hardcore, and punk and combines them into a seething ball of hatred and despair. The execution of these aforementioned styles is also worth noting as the band has a good handle on playing with dynamics, taking the listener on a whirlwind tour of their dirty city. Coating this filth is a peculiar attention to melody that feels almost translucent in its effect, allowing the listener to be taken in by its eerie comfort but not allowing them to flee the crime scene. To top off this alleyway high in style, a subtle attention to noise metal is thrown into the mix for good measure.
“Permanent Ice” gets things off to one of these more melodious starts, but suddenly changes gears and fills the listeners ears with high-energy crust punk and could be equated to having your face smashed in with the butt of a gun. This is prime example of what the band does best and can be felt through other ass-whooping numbers such as “You Get What You Want”, “Wake Up And Smell The Corpses” and “Inself/Infinite”. When the band decides to throw a wrench into the gears, earlier period albums such as Season Of Séance, Science Of Silence
become nostalgic and are used without sounding like past rehash. “Scarlet” is a muddled doom epic that focuses more on the slow crush rather than the mid-tempo slug-fests that make up a majority of the album. Needless to say, these particular doom cuts only go to show you how Unearthly Trance can move entire continents on different levels of display.
Frontman and guitarist Ryan Lipynsky should be hailed as one of doom metals hero’s. Not only are his riffs the ultimate salute to everything great about doom in the 21st century, he has some of the best gurgling vocals this side of metal and the lyrical know-how to complete the bands ultimately depressive outlook. Not only are his lyrics inspired by his surroundings, but his bleak notes are rather interesting to read as well. An example from the song “Permanent Ice” is provided below:
Truth is cancer that I need/ Conspiracy is the Seed/ Hail falls violently (finally)/ Permanent ice speaks volumes/ But first the meltdown must come/ Followed by the sacrificial slaughter/ Depraved in a dead century
Ultimately, by the time The Trident
finishes off with the catastrophically, noisy tune “Where The Unbelievable Is Ordinary”, your ears will be bleeding and rightly so because this album is a wallop to the head and then some. The combination of real-life atmosphere and the heavy musical roots that New York City was producing during the 80s and 90s are simply perfected here and have also allowed the band over the years to expand upon their primal doom beginnings. Have you ever witnessed someone getting their head beaten in with a crowbar? The Trident
is as close to this as you can possibly get without breaking the law.