In the 90’s, the trip-hop heavyweights like Massive Attack (pictured above), Portishead, and Tricky hit the mainstream. During, and shortly after their success, other trip-hop acts sprung up: Morcheeba, Sneaker Pimps (now disbanded), Hooverphonic, and a host of others.
But the heavyweights took their sweet time between album releases. Portishead, for example, took 11 years to release their last album, THIRD. And it wasn’t even trip-hop anymore. You could argue that it still had the same dark tones and electro-infused sounds, but it was clearly an evolution of the sound for the band, and a departure from the record scratches and electro-acoustic sounds of trip-hop. Massive Attack, in their follow up albums to Mezzanine, also went more electronic.
I don’t think the genre of trip-hop is dead, but I do think it has evolved. I like where it’s going. To me, a good trip-hop album will send shivers down my spine on every listen. It’s my go-to genre when I’m not sure what I feel like listening to on a particular day. And until the day where I refuse to play a Portishead or Massive Attack album, trip-hop will still be alive and well in my heart.