Wednesday, 18 February 2015


Trauma is a power speed metal band from San Francisco formed in 1981 being well known being Cliff Burton in the band before joining Metallica; Trauma released one album in 1984, Scratch and scream, and then split to be reformed in 2013.

Now Trauma is back! And the imminent album Rapture and wrath is coming the next 27th February 2015 (pure steel records) as a full demonstration of renovated energies since their last work 30 years ago, US pure heavy metal with bay area influences and drippings of Dio meeting Iron Maiden, they were considered into speed metal before but in this album the rhythms are predominantly slow mixed with mid to fast tempo, so heavy - power metal could be the band style precisely, add the exceptional quality of the vocals, high pitched and clean techniques denoting also excellent theatrical parts, and guitars are sharp and well harmonised with drums and bass, showing some technical sections here and there.

Heart of stone Opens the album, and what a song! Fast paced true metal in every chord, one of the highlights of the album that will make you bang your head right away, remarkable chorus with long vocal notes under the speed pounding drumbeats, followed by When I die, as another mid fast injection of heavy metal with drippings of us epic metal, good contrast between verses and bridge and truly intense chorus, vocal parts are great and reminds some Bruce Dickinson influence mostly in the chorus.

The long way home is created as a mid tempo ballad, with a well composed ascending structure that make it really intense, as the dark melodies of Pain start, with a slow to mid paced shot of doom metal influences with Judas Priest memories on the guitar notes, the changes of rhythms are great on the instrumental galloping sounds and the vocal lows and highs.

The walking dead also reminds the dark side of the band as they forge pure doom melodies and transform it in another classic heavy metal mid tempo chorus, as Kingdom come explodes in one of the best tracks of the album, the vocal interpretation is exceptional as the intensity goes and comes from verses to bridge and chorus continuing with Egypt as a good track with oriental drippings on the vocal parts and strong riffs, awesome composition accelerated by the next shot, Under the lights, speed heavy metal with US metal melodies creating awesome rhythm changes that will make you bang your head following the action to Don't tread on me, one of the best interpreted tracks of the album, the vocal parts and guitar melodies herald also hard rock influences, as the last track, Too Late bangs with strong and heavy mid fast tempo riffs, with good details on the guitar backgrounds and drum performance.

Trauma are reborn in this album denoting a young feeling energy in every song, some of them are brilliant, heart of stone and when I die definitely are the best cuts of the band, losing grip as the album continues but catching the listener attention at the end with good theatrical interpretations and excellent compositions.

Overall Trauma forged a good album, not at the level of other young bands of the NWOTHM but as a return from the darkness, it's an excellent point of entry.

7,5 / 10

Line up

Donny Hillier Vocals 
Kris Gustofson Drums 
Kurt Fry Guitars 
Steve Robello Bass


Release by Pure Steel Records

Review by Daniel Ortiz from Metalheads Union and Metalheads Union FB

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