Taproot - Welcome

Four piece rock combo Taproot have recorded a follow up album after the success of their debut "Gift". The hard working Michigan based band are in a more reflective and sophisticated mood on "Welcome", but still thankfully at the heart of each song is a love of pure metal.

Produced by Toby Wight (Korn, Metallica and Alice In Chains) and recorded in LA the album takes us on a journey of metal over the past decade. The first few seconds of "Poem" remind you of Nirvana before morphing into the kind of noise that System Of A Down would make with it's crunching guitars, melodic vocals and obligatory metal growling it is also surprising given it's influences that it falls on the poppier side of the rock fence. "Myself" which poses questions about the human condition in a philosophical way - a metal version of BBC2's the late review if you like. But still take away the lyrical subject matters and your left with a mosh pit anthem with three part harmonies reminiscent of the Beach Boys and the sort of rock heavy melody which takes us back to the heady days of Honeycrack (Ed: Ask your older brother on that one).

"Sumtimes" is a mixture of old school Metallica guitar riffs and the vocal leanings of the Manic's James Dean Bradfield with an American nasal twang. The sort of good old fashioned rock music which wipes those memories of Nu-Metal out of the system and while it's loud and lairy, they're the sort of tunes that the milkman can whistle to. Closing track "Time" is in the grand tradition of the Red Hot Chilli Peppers - all funky guitars and slapping bass lines - and is the perfect end to a rocking album.

"Welcome" brings a much needed intelligence to the rock scene and is a massive leap from their debut. And with so many tracks having single written all over them it won't be long before Taproot cross over in a massive way and say a big "Welcome" to the world.

Nicholas Paul Godkin

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