Trial –Sisters of the Moon

Back in 2017 I reviewed Trial’s third album, Motherless for another publication. I was less than complimentary about the Swedes, describing the vocals of Linus Johansson as ‘nails down a blackboard’.

Well, I’m pleased to say that Mr Johansson is no longer singing for Trial, and his replacement Arthur W. Andersson (ex-Air Raid) has a much kinder delivery. So far so good and with this two-track single Andersson makes his recording debut with the band.

It’s a brave and unusual record. Now, what readers of UK Thrashers will think about a Fleetwood Mac cover and a Black Sabbath cover is open to debate. Recorded as everything is these days in lock down, the choices are most interesting. Sisters of the Moonis a well-known song from 1979’s Tusk and Trial certainly give it a good effort. Much harder edged than the Mac original, the biggest challenge is for Andersson to get anywhere near the smoky tones of the fabulous Stevie Nicks. Thankfully, Trial don’t even attempt it, instead hitting a hard rock version that at times echoes their countrymen Ghost. The soaring vocals and blistering guitar solos work effortlessly, the tempo pitched right and overall, it’s a sensitive and solid cover.

Sticking more to the traditional format for the second track, Trial givesa legendary metal track a real good go. Die Youngfrom1980’s Heaven & Hellissuch a massive track that anyone who even considers covering it must have cojones of elephant proportions. Trial stick close to the original, and it’s a decent attempt, with the impossible challenge of filling RJD’s vocal boots provingthe biggest sticking point. Andersson just doesn’t have the vocal dexterity of the former Elfalthough he certainly doesn’t devastate the track by any means. Musically the band are tight, adding their own elements, twists,and tweaks. A brave attempt that truly demonstrates how bloody good Sabbath at that time. This doesn’t fill me with dread about the next release. There are plenty of positives from this record, and Andersson’s performance is promising. It’ll be interesting to see if the next album realises the potential that is displayed here.

Trial – Sisters Of The Moon is released on Metal Blade Records on the 29 January 2021

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