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STRIKER Striker

By Alex Yarborough, Orlando Contributor
Wednesday, March 8, 2017 @ 4:03 PM


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STRIKER
Striker

2017 Record Breaking Records




Hot on the heels of their excellent release Stand In The Fire, Edmonton, Canada-based power metal band STRIKER have returned with their fifth album almost exactly one year later.

I really enjoyed the blast of ‘80s-flavored metal the band delivered on Stand In The Fire and looked forward to this release. The harmony vocals from Dan Cleary and the band are still nice and high in the mix. Guitarist Tim Brown is on fire again, with riffs and solos that are very enjoyable. Wild Bill’s bass work is impressive and Adam Brown’s swift double bass drumming attack once again goes for the throat.

“Former Glory” kicks things off in STRIKER’s trademark style. A solid track, but things get interesting with the second track, “Pass Me By”, a melodic thrasher that reminds me of a lot early ANTHRAX with its shout-along backing vocals. “Born To Lose” is another good song, featuring uplifting lyrics. A lyric video for the track can be viewed on KNAC.COM right HERE.

“Cheating Death” is an instrumental that serves no real purpose here, other than an unnecessary buffer between “Born To Lose” and “Shadows In The Light”. Without a doubt, “Shadows In The Light” is an essential composition on this album, and features some nice bass work from Wild Bill and a climactic build from verse to bridge to chorus. “Rock The Night” returns to the melodic power metal the band has perfected and “Over The Top” is another successful dabble into melodic thrash. “Freedom’s Call” has an intro that makes you think you’re getting a ballad; but there are no ballads on the album, and the song eventually takes off into the stratosphere with one of the catchiest choruses to be found here. The album closes with the excellent “Curse Of The Dead”, a song with spiraling riffs and shout-along backing vocals.

To these ears, the band has streamlined their sound a bit on this album. The cover, adorned only with an iconic illustration of a snake entwined with three swords on a white background, may also be a reference to a more straightforward direction for the band. Nothing wrong with that, but I don’t hear a song as catchy as “Phoenix Lights” or “Too Late”. The album is a bit short (at around 34 minutes) and seems like it needs at least another full track to feel complete.

The production and mix are both impressive again for a band doing everything themselves. Hard work and relentless touring have paid off, as STRIKER does things their way in independent fashion, on their quest to deliver ‘80s influenced power metal to the masses. STRIKER is one of those bands that truly live the heavy metal lifestyle and would probably tour forever if possible. STRIKER’s self-titled album is available now.

4.0 Out Of 5.0

Pick up your copy of Striker in the KNAC.COM More Store right HERE.


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