posted on 5/2006 By:
I’m what a lot of our readers might refer to as ‘an old fucker’. I may have been blessed with a young face, immature attitude, and the liver of an abusive circus clown, but at the staggering age of 35, I might as well be one of the bloody Disciples as far as most of our readers are concerned. Don’t get me wrong, in most cases I wear this badge with unabashed pride. Hell, I was a metalhead during a time when metal seemed to be absolutely everywhere...a time when it wasn’t considered rare or at all strange to see high-topped rippers walking about shirtless with sleeveless denims covered with metal patches...a time when a young me could walk into the local Cleveland record store and buy Overkill’s Taking Over directly off the ‘new release vinyl’ wall. 19fucking87 bitches...a time when my brazen fuck-you attitude was at its peak, and I was always looking to hear whatever was meaner, heavier and faster than what I’d just heard the day before. But even as my metal tastes began to sway towards the more visceral, I still found myself occasionally enjoying the solid hard-rock/metal bands that were my staple during the early 80s (Saxon, Accept, The Rods, and early records from Dokken). And being a young feller growing up in Cleveland, Ohio, in 1987, I was lucky enough to have a young band of rippers called Shok Paris directly in my midst...a band primarily lead by the ballsy vocals of one Vic Hix, and a band that understood how to straddle the line of hard rock/traditional metal perfectly.
Fast-forward nearly 20 years later and what do I find in our swelling queue of metal records to review? An offering from band called Aftershok, featuring none other than a ripe Vic Hix on vocals. "Holy fucking shit, and I’ll be damned", I thought to myself, "this is something I need to investigate". To the three readers of this site that might already be familiar with Shok Paris, it brings me great pleasure to report the following – Hix’s vocals are still every bit as ballsy as they were back in ‘86, but perhaps with a tinge more vibrato (for those interested in a reference point, think Jon Oliva after pounding a couple Red-Bulls). And as to be expected, the band backing Hix sounds remarkably similar to the Shok Paris of old as well. Burning Chrome has all the in-your-face principles that made good hard rock records good back in the day; loads of gas pedal abusing riffs, head-bobbing bass lines, wailing lead guitar solos, and solid, confident, non-pussy vocals. Aftershok does what a new band like Hellrazor does not - R.O.C.K. (if you haven’t done so already, pay a visit to Mooring’s excellent review of Hellrazor next door). Hell, even Aftershok's slower numbers (“When Comes The Rain”) hit hard and decidedly un-daintily. In a nutshell, Burning Chrome delivers solid hard rockin’ metal, played by guys who really don't give a fuck if you think they’re old and playing dated music. These guys obviously aren’t doing this for the paycheck folks, they’re doing it because they have an obvious passion for this style of metal.
I really enjoyed Burning Chrome. It’s certainly not something that’ll break up my steady diet of harsher metal too often, but it’s definitely a record that’s gonna get played time and again. Old men, if you want to take a rip down memory lane, please do yourself a favor and check out Burning Chrome. And if you’re a youngster that's considering taking the plunge, be careful how loud you play this record in your room, you're liable to get your Dad or Uncle to come bursting through the door with what he thinks will be your first beer, ready to rap to you about broads, booze and runnin’ from the cops back in the day. Rev it up.
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