Trippy Wicked & the Cosmic Children of the Knight have been doing their thing since 2006 and during that time they’ve managed to put together 2 albums and an acoustic EP. Their latest release ‘Underground’ will be the band’s 2nd EP but it follows the desert rock/sludge metal leanings of their 2 albums and it sees the band mature and progress as musicians even further.
Trippy Wicked build their songs around a monolithic groove while vocalist and guitarist Peter Holland gets his psychedelic Ozzy Osbourne impression on. There’s no harsh vocals to be found here as Holland prefers to add melody to the band’s music instead of raw aggression. The band find themselves in a lovely little niche that means they sound like an ungodly mix of Black Sabbath and Kyuss.
Underground carries over these sensibilities but what it does try is make a more cohesive listening experience out of it all by generally keeping the songs in a slower pace instead of changing the tempos from song to song. The decision to slow everything down really works in Trippy Wicked’s favour as they now get to push their grooves to the forefront and give the listener some absolutely stunning riffs to headbang to. Stand out moments include ‘Echoes Return’ and the foreboding lurch of instrumental track ‘Enlightenment’ which both dish out more groove than you ears can handle.
Unfortunately despite the heavily improved song writing and cohesion, the EP does suffer from something the band have always had a problem with and that is production values. The fuzzy almost nasal guitar work isn’t given the weight it truly deserves and all the songs feel like they could have done with having the bass cranked up higher. Trippy Wicked are a band that should sound considerably heavier than this and their songs could really benefit from the power of a more elaborate mix.
This is the only real negative we can throw at the record and despite lacking a bit of punch you can really hear a huge progression in the band’s ability as song writers. There is no denying that songs like ‘New Beginnings’ would sound absolutely gigantic live but until Trippy Wicked get someone to capture that on record their music isn’t going to have the impact it truly deserves. ‘Underground’ is definitely not a bad EP at all and if you listen to the songs for their own merits they are all brilliant examples of sludge metal at its finest, but we can’t help but imagine how utterly enormous this EP could have sounded with the right producer.
Trippy Wicked & the Cosmic Children of the Knight’s Underground EP is out now and available to buy on digipak CD direct from the band.