|Review: Paradox - Electrify|
Label: AFM Records
Year released: 2008
Genre: Thrash Metal
Review online: January 14, 2009
Reviewed by: Daniel DGYDP Guerrero
Rated 3.92/5 (78.33%) (12 Votes)
Paradox is one of those Thrash bands that managed to produce a more progressive, unique sound in a time when the genre was flooded by third-rate groups that wanted nothing more than emulate their heroes. In the late '80s, a handful of bands (Toxik, Artillery, Realm, Helstar, Heathen ...) managed to take Thrash Metal to the next level, incorporating progressive ideas and new sounds into the over-saturated, 'standard' Thrash Metal formula. Paradox have never let me down, so I was expecting something good. What I got was more than that: their best album to date, and that's saying quite a lot.
The familiar Paradox concept - catchy Thrash Metal mixed with Power Metal overtones, Speed Metal riffing, unique compositions and diverse songs- has been perfected and put in a CD that was released in 2008: Electrify. Where the old albums were a bit chaotic and sloppy, this one manages to deliver a clear and focused sound, thanks mainly to the great production and mind-blowing twin guitar work. All instruments are given enough room to breathe, exposing an intricate layered structure, where many different interesting things are going on at the same time. An obvious result is the loss of straightforwardness, putting this album in the more progressive side of the genre.
Needless to say the two guitars deliver a melodic and heavy sound, with a harmonious teamwork that few other bands have ever managed to achieve. As always, the riffing is incredible, crushing and diverse. The vocals are clean and great, perhaps reminding one of a more well-behaving James Hetfield in his prime. Drumming and bass playing are also more than satisfying, making the interaction between the different members an example for most bands out there. There is, however, one detracting factor here: overuse of semi-ballads. My opinion has always been that more than two ballads on a Thrash album is simply too much. Electrify has three of them: "Portrait in Grey", "Bridge to Silence" and "Cyberspace Romance" ...
The last of those, "Cyberspace Romance", is also the worst song on the album and should have gotten rid of. All the other songs are interesting and worth multiple listens, making this album one of the best of 2008. This is recommended to all those who like Thrash that is more than "just Thrash", who are not afraid of melody and variation. Fans of the old albums will not be disappointed either, since this is easily better than their "classic" stuff. Power/Speed Metal fans in general might also enjoy this, since there is plenty of that to be found here as well. Go now and check this out!
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Interview with Charly Steinhauer (guitars and vocals) on October 13, 2009 (Interviewed by Daniel DGYDP Guerrero)
Interview with guitarist and vocalist Charly Steinhauer on November 13, 2015 (Interviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
Interview with vocalist and guitarist Charly Steinhauer on October 25, 2014 (Interviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
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