The rock ‘n roll venue Volt in Sittard was shaking heavily when the Dutch female fronted hardrock/metal band Black Label celebrated the release of their debut EP ‘United in Black’ on January 21th, 2017. After a demo (2014) and a few singles (2015), the band realized that it was time for some serious business: their first 6-track EP.
When the first song ‘Never Sleep Again’ starts, one thing is for sure: this band is born to bring you a delicious and accessible sounding combination of hardrock and heavy metal. Not bad at all when you hear very dark and heavy low tuned guitar riffs, completed with edgy female vocals. And to be honest, finally I hear some female vocals in ‘metal world’ that doesn’t make me bored. It’s incisively, original, authentic and I believe in what she is singing.
The sound of the instruments is amazingly warm and solid and everything is perfect in balance. Especially the quality and the perfect timing of the guitar solos is for me one of the highlights on this album. Especially in the ‘Somebody Get Me A Doctor’ the guitars are above average. The title track ‘United In Black’ is in my opinion the song with the most variety and the best song on this EP. But isn’t there anything negative to tell about this album? Well maybe there are two minor things. First of all the fifth song ‘Echoes Of Time’. It’s a kind of power ballad, but it doesn’t make me very enthusiast. It’s just to weak and slow and doesn’t make this EP stronger. The second and last semi-negative thing I would like to mention, is that all the songs are overall a bit the same. I miss some variety, excitement and unique surprises.
My conclusion is that this is just a damn good EP to start a journey with. Complete, packed and very well written songs, with an amazing sound. A steady album with catchy metal songs, which entertained me very much. And remember, they are at their best when they play up tempo and heavy songs!
Score: 8.3/10 ★★★★☆
01. Never Sleep Again (ft. Roel Peijs)
02. Step Into The Dark Side
03. Scream Of Silence
04. United In Black
05. Echoes Of Time
06. Somebody Get Me A Doctor