Lords Of The Trident - Plan Of Attack (EP) (2013)


Their bio reads like a conglomerate of Greek and Roman mythology, with robots, pirates and metal added for some extra flavor. But Lords Of The Trident, from Madison, Wisconsin, are not merely acting out a story. Together, these five warriors have embarked on an epic journey to create the most metal band, and album, the world has ever seen. After sailing the treacherous seas, climbing towering mountains, and fighting off those who would try to stop them, they began to reach their goals. With their two prior EPs, they forged a sound that was steely and shiny. But on this, their third effort, they've strengthened themselves, strengthened their lineup, and moved beyond mere metal itself. Combining all of their influences, from lightning to barbarians, swords to knitting, the Lords have taken you on a trip through time itself, to the classic age of all things heavy and all things melodic. On "Plan Of Attack," they go back to the future, and leave you with something nostalgic and new.

One high pitched wail, and "Complete Control" erupts with barely a second's notice. Band frontman Fang VonWrathenstein has a voice that commands the army, hitting both the higher register, and the smooth middle ground. And as dynamic as he is, the dueling guitar lines muscle in and steal the show from time to time. With the talents of Killius Maximus and Asian Metal at the six strings, the charge is always on. Everything falls into place, adopting a new spin on the classic metal sound on tracks like "Plan Of Attack." The tempo is high, but the energy is higher, harkening back to the days when the men of metal were Gods among mortals. It would be an insult to try to capture the catchy nature of the hooks here, undoubtedly leaving every fist high in the air, and every strand of hair swinging in tribute. Conversely, they show their ability to adapt and change, with the more deliberate riffs of "Song Of The Wind And Sea." The grooves here are heavier, but the vocals are far more indicative of the range at play. Bassist Pontifex Mortis gives you something to appreciate in the low end, with another precisely delivered bass line. The track, as a whole, is an anthem in the making. But the finale, standing at a robust seven minutes, brings the hammer down both literally and figuratively. Drummer Sledge Garrotte takes care of the former, while the lyrical content fulfills the latter. A dizzying solo and crushing outro later, you've got a inch for more.

It's one thing to come up with a theme; it's another thing entirely to throw yourself into the role with both feet. For Lords Of The Trident, these are not characters or alter egos. They are living this story to the fullest, and making music that completes it. It's as though they've created a time machine that brings history to you, rather than you to history. They've conjured up the sounds, the imagery, and the technical ability of the some of the greatest bands of the last few decades, and brought it all back full force in the year 2013. Call this what you will; cheesy, done to death, ancient. Those are all just words. When the album is over and you've digested the four songs, you'll have them lodged somewhere in your brain for a long time to come. For whatever reason, this is the kind of music that lasts, the kind of music that lingers. This is the kind of EP that you'll go back to time and time again, even when you don't know why. Based on that alone, "Plan Of Attack" would be worthy of your time. But it's even better than you think.

8.5/10

Bandcamp - http://lordsofthetrident.bandcamp.com/
Facebook - http://www.facebook.com/lordsofthetrident