Song of the Day: Trouble - The Misery Shows (II)

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Though a fantastic classic/doom metal band, Chicago’s Trouble were always slightly confusing. They often used Christian imagery, biblically-themed lyrics, and somewhat uncharacteristically for doom metal–a positive outlook. Take this ballad from their 1990 self-titled album:

Please, take His hand
The time has come to learn
Please, take my hand
Let me take you to learn

And yet, the band played almost exclusively secular venues with other secular artists, and depending on which band members you talked to, they seemed to distance themselves from the “Christian” tag. While the band’s history and religious affiliations are much too complicated to go into here, suffice it to say there was always at least one Christian member in the band, and sometimes two–guitarist Bruce Franklin, and sometime drummer Jeff Olson. I suppose we could say that Trouble, though never using the terminology themselves, were one of the first “Christian-in-a-band” scenarios. An interesting side note here is the band were probably the first to receive the tag “white metal,” a moniker first assigned to them by their label Metal Blade. Though the band did not like the term, it was meant to describe how positive their lyrics were, in contrast to much of the satanic “black metal” of the 1980s.

Musically, they are one of the most legendary doom metal bands around, often incorporating influences of psychedelic rock, as can be heard prominently on “The Misery Shows (II).” Enjoy!

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February 28, 2020 12:35 pm

Excellent song! I met Bruce Franklin back in 1991 at Cornerstone Festival in Bushnell, IL just walking through the merch tent! He was an awesome guy and very gracious. He was there early taking in the fest and shared the stage with Tourniquet on their cover of Trouble’s “The Tempter”. The performance was amazing! The self-titled Trouble album from 1990 has long been one of my absolute favorite hard rock / metal albums and I’m glad to see you represent it with this most amazing track! I’ve always heard a lot of Led Zep in this one. I was also… Read more »

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