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Review: Shok Paris - Full Metal Jacket
Shok Paris
Full Metal Jacket

Label: No Remorse Records
Year released: 2020
Duration: 51:29
Tracks: 12
Genre: Heavy Metal

Rating: 3.75/5

Review online: June 9, 2020
Reviewed by: MetalMike
Readers Rating
Full Metal Jacket

Rated 4/5 (80%) (1 Vote)

I owned a cassette copy of what is undoubtedly Shok Paris' most well-known release, Steel and Starlight, back in the day. I listened a few times, but it never left much more of an impression on me that being a typical mid-80s metal album. At least it wasn't hair metal.

Now I'm listening to their 2020 album, Full Metal Jacket, and despite my vague recollections of Steel and Starlight, it is not really what I was expecting, which was testosterone-fueled music about chicks and the metal lifestyle. Full Metal Jacket bears some similarities with Steel and Starlight (now that I've gone back and spun that one again) in the gravelly shouted vocals and punchy guitars. As I said, this band was not hair metal. Where Full Metal Jacket differs is in the sound, which is modern as Shok Paris appear to have taken full advantage of current studio technologies as well as incorporated things like occasional down-tuning that were rare back in the '80s. As for the lyrics, Full Metal Jacket opens with a spoken-word piece featuring a Travis Bickle-like gent describing the ammunition he's using before launching into the title track. No "Rocked Outta Love" or "Falling for You" on this album. It is a grittier affair that embraces the thrash influences that hovered at the very edges of Shok Paris' '80s output. I feel like they've sacrificed some melody in pursuit of aggression and a lot of the album just strikes me as out of character but, on the other hand, kudos for trying something new and not rehashing past glories.

Shok Paris is a band that's been around the block a few times, so Full Metal Jacket is pro from the performances to the production. I'm not sold on the new sound, which to my ears is choppy and harsh, but that's me. If you like bands ranging from Ravage and Steel Assassin to Vicious Rumors and Warrior, this will probably appeal to you as well.

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