Trouble – Psalm 9, 1979

Ok, so this is a “doom metal” band I found while searching out artists Black Sabbath had influenced. At the time this album released in 79’ there hadn’t been much bands that took the “heavier” route of Sabbath. Most bands, mainly the rest of the NWOBHM, were doing the Judas Priest thing with dual guitar lead theatrics.. As far as I can see Trouble and Witchfinder General are the earliest bands that went for the slow-heavy-doom sound Sabbath had done with their debut Black Sabbath, Vol 4, and Sabotage. Singer Eric Wagner has an energetic and distorted voice in the same realm as Rob Halford, with hints of Robert Plant with his upper register. Lead guitarist Bruce Franklin and rhythm guitarist Rick Wartell mesh together well. Almost like a progenitor of Metallica.

It starts off with an atmosphere similar to Black Sabbath’s Black Sabbath, titled “The Tempter”. The weather, riffage, and all; this is structured similar to the aforementioned Sabbath tune. Right after they pick up the pace with “Assassin”, a heavy thrash song featuring a lead with tasteful guitar tone. This is the song that introduced me to the band. I remember seeing the lead player thinking he was a Randy Rhoads clone, not knowing they predate him. So I wonder if Randy at any point was aware of their existence. “The Fall of Lucifer” is one their heavier songs. A lot of Iommi-sequels guitar riffing with a blistering guitar solo. The album finishes with “Psalm 9” and “Tales of Brave Ulysses”, the former sharing the name of the album and the latter being a Cream cover. Psalm 9 is another one of those songs that give them the “doom” label. Maybe the best on this album. Just a crushing rhythm guitar with energetic vocals, I could easily have mistaken this for a Judas Priest tune. “Tales of Brave Ulysses” is Cream meets Heavy Metal. Probably prefer this over the original and a great tribute to the band.

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