I like what TROUBLE have done with this album, “Plastic Green Head”. The music sounds fairly dissimilar to the completely doom-laden, crushing riffs present on the earlier material, but what TROUBLE do here sounds every bit authentic. Not to mislead you, this definitely still sounds like TROUBLE, but they seem to have adopted a more laidback, Stoner Metal approach; sacrificing sinister atmospheres for more upbeat ones. For the most part, the band pulls this off nicely, but there’s a few dodgy moments here and there.
The first few tracks are completely awesome offerings of vintage TROUBLE. The playful, Thrashy riff of the title track, which opens the album, is a great introduction to the music at hand and Eric Wagner’s distinctive vocals sound powerful overtop. The chorus on this one is especially catchy, and I love the solo that closes the song. Following this impressive opener is perhaps an even more memorable number. “The Eye” is a mid-paced beast that thunders along, led by a catchy, splendidly heavy riff. There’s also a great chorus on this one, and the lyrics are fairly interesting, if you’d like to sing along. At first when I heard “Flowers” (a very soft, relaxed song in comparison to most of the other material) I thought it was a fairly lame way to follow up the blazing awesomeness of its predecessor, but after a few listens, I’m able to appreciate it for what it is; an opportunity to chill out for a while amongst heavy fury of its surroundings. I wouldn’t call it a highlight, necessarily, but I’m glad it’s there. The Doomness is quickly cranked up a few notches on “Opium Eater”, which is satisfyingly heavy, if not as memorable as the first two tracks. “Hear The Earth” packs a very badass riff and features the most scorching solo on the album. The latter songs on the album are a bit wavering in consistency. “Requiem” is another soft tune, but I find it to be one of the lesser convincing moments of the album. “Plastic Green Head” closes with a cover of the excellent BEATLES song, “Tomorrow Never Knows”, but unfortunately TROUBLE’s version doesn’t really work for me. The vocals sound pretty cool, but I don’t think the song suits what they’ve done with it.
If you’re looking for a nice dose of Stoner Metal, you’ll find just that right here. There’s plenty of memorable riffs which provide good replay value, and although you won’t find as much Doom as you might expect from TROUBLE, it’s still there if you look for it.
Guest review by Rory Say
(Online May 3, 2010)