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Aftershok - Detonate

by VR at 22 January 2017, 8:30 PM

AFTERSHOK is a Pittsburg, Pennsylvania based Classic Metal band that formed way back in 1996 when ex-vocalist Vic Hux and guitar player George Mihalovich met up and realized they have the same interest in Classic Metal and Hard Rock. A few years later drummer George Borden and bassist Nick Gryzka joined the band and they set about rehearsing and began performing live in the year 2000. Two full-length albums followed, " Unfinished Business" in 2002 and " Burning Chrome" in the year 2005. The band has been since featured in esteemed international Metal publications and online from all around the globe. Vocalist Gord Sheffroth replaces Vic Hux on their latest effort. The band has performed with acts like JUDAS PRIEST, RATT, MALMSTEEN, SAVATAGE,KIP WINGER,FIREHOUSE,WARRANT and LIZZY BORDEN to name a few. Maor Appelbaum, who has worked with acts like SEPULTURA, HALFORD, ANVIL, DOKKEN and ARMOURED SAINT, managed the mastering of “Detonate”.

The album kicks off with "Prelude To Fear", an instrumental into lasting less than a minute in duration. It features twin guitar attack and announces the tone of the album that follows. The melody continues into" Enter The Dark", a fast galloping song that is a staple Classic Metal song. The track is reminiscent of Halford fronted JUDAS PRIEST and the vocals certainly bears a strong closeness to the way the Metal God sings and the only thing missing is Halford's intensity. "Hang Em Dry" has an interesting opening riff that forms the backbone of the song. The song is one of the faster tracks in the album and is just over a crisp 5 minutes in duration. An intense lead solo makes its appearance halfway through the track that the backing riff reinforces. "Forever in Metal" is the unavoidable ode to the Heavy Metal genre that most bands put out. The song is a quick tempo-ed track that will sure to be a fan favorite and is the stand out track for me. The chorus colludes with all the Classic Rock bands that the 80's gave birth to. "When The Shadows Fall" begins with a bass doodle accompanied by twin lead guitar attack and a memorable riff. The lyrics, meanwhile, are just about passable. The weakest part of the song is the bridge between the verse and the chorus that strangely loses steam.

"The hunger" starts off with an acoustic melody before the guitars and drums detonate as if on cue. This is a regulation Classic Metal song that reminds me of QUEENSRYCHE in the way the melody progresses with its high-pitched vocals and superlative guitar work.

AFTERSHOK has been around for a while so immediately we know that they are bunch of seasoned professional musicians. The album really kicks into gear after the first two songs come and go and the album picks up steam. However by the time "Friend or Foe" comes on, the songs seem a little tired and jaded. The guitar work and the drumming is spot-on but one does get the feeling the vocals are just about good. There is something missing and I felt the band and the music lacks the edge to push them over from just another Classic Rock/Metal band to the next level. The best way to listen to this album is to get on the trusty headphones and blare it at high volumes. Recommended to fans of the Classic Metal era that spawned artists like JUDAS PRIEST and other bands of the 80's sound.

Songwriting: 6
Originality: 5
Memorability: 6
Production: 6

3 Star Rating

1. Prelude To Fear
2. Enter The Dark
3. Hang Em Dry
4. The World United
5. Forever In Metal
6. When The Shadows Fall
7. Friend Or Foe
8. In The Eye Of The Storm
9. The Hunger
10. Ready To Rock
11. Under The Gun
12. Rise
13. Cities On fire
Gord Sheffroth - Vocals
George Mihalovich - Guitars
George Borden - Drums
Record Label: Auburn Records


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