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Athrox - Through the Mirror

Athrox
Through the Mirror
by Kevin Burke at 01 January 2019, 8:00 PM

The sound of metal has erupted from Tuscany once more,  ATHROX have just released an incendiary follow-up to the 2016 genre-defining “Are You Alive?”, a compass point for thrash metal in this new millennia. On “Through The Mirror” the band once again rips through the fabric of sonic metal and deliver the goods with depth and passion.  The atmospheric opening courtesy of “Waters Of The Acheron” attack your senses full on, the soothing sounds of water disintegrate into a glorious eruption of trash. Again on this release Giancarlo Picchianti showcases a vocal talent which is again a talented standout, indeed, the soundscape is impressive which builds behind him but with the delivery of each line is a direct and passionate impact.

Ashes Of Warsaw” continues in the same vein, opening with the Geiger-counter bleep into a mind-blowing attack.  The refrain midway as Syro and Franks guitars pull back the intensity and letting melody break through is a testament to the talent within the core of ATHROX. On the title track “Through The Mirror” the guitar lines are soft and hypnotic, blending seamlessly until a screech of feedback summons the drums and bass.  The instrumental guides a variety of tempos gloriously.

Imagine The Day” is as close to a ballad as they get, the Tommy-Gun firing of the drums by Aroon is immensely satisfying to hear, all hell breaks loose again with “Decide Or Die”, an almost funk-trash affair.  Again here Picchianti is one part Vince Neil, one part James Hetfield, not a copy but hard to pinpoint the exact style. “Sadness N’ Tears” is a definite highlight, brash but exquisite, not as hard pumping as other numbers but even when reigned in ATHROX can become as hardcore as the best of them.  A second distorted-growling vocal breaks into the mix to announce further terror.

The beautiful second instrumental “Fragments” is a magnificent, acoustic interlude, as if another dimension of the album has started, as the organic guitar picking leads into “Dreams Of Freedom”.  A simply constructed slice of reflective magic which proves further more the lengths ATHROX will go to, overreaching without any overkill on the sound. There is no stab at commercial success here, instead another turn of the sonic card the band has in their deck.  The transition back into distorted guitars are blended with ease as again the firing drum sound introduces it, as a band they have more than one gear and more than just one

Fallen Apart” closes the album out with a thunderous groove, ironically titled as it is something the band have not done throughout, a totally satisfying listens which deserves an often revisit.  There are echoes of the past within the structure of “Through The Mirror”, but the style ATHROX have make it only hints instead of an overwhelming copy.  They have found their niche in the last two years and are running on all cylinders with it.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 7

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Waters of the Acheron
2. Ashes of Warsaw
3. Empty Soul
4. Through the Mirror
5. Imagine the Day
6. Decide or Die
7. Sadness n’ Tears
8. Fragments
9. Dreams of Freedom
10. Fallen Apart
Lineup:
Giancarlo “IAN” Picchianti – Lead Vocals
Sandro “SYRO” Seravalle – Guitars
Francesco “FRANK” Capitoni – Guitars
Andrea “LOBO” Capitani – Bass Guitars
Alessandro “AROON” Brandi – Drums
Record Label: Revalve records
     


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Edited 24 January 2019
 

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