Triaxis : Rage and Retribution

South Wales band Triaxis have certainly taken their time with this one… but finally Rage and Retribution, the follow up to 2009’s Key To The Kingdom is almost upon us.

So… worth waiting for?

Key To The Kingdom located the band squarely in the “classic metal” genre. Well written for sure, loaded with power and passion absolutely but still ploughing a familiar, and well worn, furrow. In the past few years the bar in terms of traditional metal has been raised considerably, and the field has become incredibly competitive with loads of frankly quite similar bands battling to make themselves heard. So how do Triaxis manage to stand out from the competition?

Easy, they release a near flawless example of what a modern Heavy Metal album should be.

Simple.

As soon as you see the album artwork you know that you’re in for something special. Now I don’t know about you but it just screams 12″ vinyl to me, and from the moment you spin up the CD it’s clear that Rage and Retribution is more than just a pretty picture. Opener Sand And Silver, a track that has become a cornerstone of the band’s live set of late, sets out Triaxis’ stall straight away…. tight and melodic, proper metal songs with proper lyrics.

The hooks are bigger, the choruses are bigger, everything is just…. better.

While many of the ingredients that go to make up Rage And Retribution are familiar enough, Triaxis have taken these and forged them into something with a twist of originality. This is an album that undoubtedly has layers of texture, mood and melody intricately interwoven but it never sounds like a technical exercise, and no one element overshadows everything else. For me this was especially true of Glynn’s lead guitar. Oh there are proper shredding solos aplenty on here, but they never get in the way of the flow of the songs.

As well as the bang-your-head speedy bits there are also calmer, more emotive moments too. One of the standout tracks on my first spin through the album was Asunder, which shifts mood and atmosphere throughout it’s 4 minutes and 40 seconds but is bound together by Krissie’s frankly awesome vocal delivery. I mean we all know this girl can sing but in Asunder things are taken to a whole other level.

Another level… yeah. That’s not a bad two word summary for this album…

In Black Trinity Krissie sings “you’ll reap what you sow, it’s just a matter of time”, well Triaxis have sown some pretty impressive seeds, and if there’s any justice it won’t be long before they reap the success that this album deserves.

With Rage and Retribution, Triaxis have definitely shaken off any inevitable preconceived comparisons you may have in mind, but here’s one for you. In terms of impact, power and sheer f’kin quality, Rage and Retribution is to Key To The Kingdom what Powerslave was to Killers.