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Antioch - Antioch II: First Strÿke

Antioch II: First Strÿke
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 05 June 2016, 4:47 PM

Definitely it is always a pleasure to get back in the saddle of the 80's, just in those magical moments that made Traditional Metal so flourished and powerful. It is not about mimicking, it is about reliving those flashes of glory that could never be brought back into life in their full form. The Canadian born and raised ANTIOCH came with the simplest of messages, flying the banner high saying that true Heavy Metal is their law and order, their purpose of making music. Of course, through their debut release "Antioch II: First Strÿke", it is their will be the law of men.

Taking hints from the various of gods of Traditional Metal such as JUDAS PRIEST, BLACK SABBATH, IRON MAIDEN, MERCYFUL FATE and ACCEPT, these guys really tried to wreak havoc. Sliding between mid-tempo streaming attacks towards a few high speed chases of the older kind, dissimilar to Thrash and a couple of low end burners, "Antioch II: First Strÿke" has the entire setting of what Heavy Metal sounded between the early to mid-80s.

The songwriting in question at times is pretty basic and minimalistic with an appeared wish to keep it catchy and straight to the point. Therefore, there are a few numbers that are meatless, just there as fillers to the collection. A few others are somewhat lackluster with all their admiration for mildly soiled Heavy Metal other than serving their potential as anthems. Nevertheless, there are several examples of songs that their image could take the band forward such as the catchy melodic cruncher "Iron Serpent", ACCEPTish "Enhammered" and the crude "Face Of Evil" al'a the cross mixture between JUDAS PRIESTish smothering balladry and the blackness of BLACK SABBATH. The latter actually felt as if it missed a few minutes but it was well played to make one think that it is everlasting.

Production wise, the entire recording, even with Joel Grind's involvement in the mastering, sounded like a homemade production yet in a kind of quality that didn't really honor the 80's direction of the band. The sound is pretty rough and even itches at times, more like a lost dusty demo tape that hasn't been played for ages. 80's Metal can be created and produced without keeping it to the cassette level.

In overall, "Antioch II: First Strÿke" serves the older forms of Heavy Metal, a bit of the darker side of what started strong in the early 80's, a sense of the occult within the lines where a shadowy evil awaits up till becoming obscure. And it serves it pretty decently.

3 Star Rating

1. The Strÿker Rides
2. Iron Serpent
3. Forever Stone
4. Enhammered
5. Face of Evil
6. Venomspitter
7. Ebon Star
8. Mistress of the Night
9. Antioch
Jordan Rhyno - Bass
Nick Allaire - Vocals
Brendan Rhyno - Drums
Alex Dupuis - Guitars
Record Label: Independent


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