MP3 Afflicted - COLD
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13 MP3 Songs in this album (48:31) !
Related styles: Rock: Modern Rock, Rock: Hard Rock, Mood: Brooding
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Album Title: Cold
Reviewers Name: Rhonda Readence
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
Summary: Afflicted takes us through the many stages of a break up, but they do it without sounding sad, sappy, or depressed. The music itself is enough to keep any listener pleasantly occupied, but when coupled with the heartfelt and thought provoking lyrics, there is no chance that anyone could walk away from this album.
When I think of Great Britain, the first thing to come to mind is tea and crumpets, royalty, and cool accents. And while this is all well and good, itâs always nice to know that there is some killer music that comes out of Great Britain too. The UK, that is. Pink Floyd, Black Sabbath, the Beatles, Mary Poppinsâ¦â¦ Oh, waitâ¦â¦
In any case, the list goes on. Included on that list should be one Menelaos Georgiou, the mastermind behind the band Afflicted. The album is based on his divorce, and when I read this, I cringed ever so slightly. I was expecting to hear some sad sappy heart broken love songs. I was gritting my teeth and wondering how I could possibly write a decent review about an album that revolves around something as serious and painful as separating yourself from someone you once loved enough to marry?
Well, I need not worry. Menelaos is not about to send us into hysterical crying jags. With the first track he makes it clear that this is not an album designed to mire anyone in sadness or despair. âTo the Lightâ is a song that speaks volumes. I feel stronger just by listening to it. The sound is excellent and the lyrics can give hope to anyone who is going through hard times, regardless of what those hard times might be. I take some sort of cold comfort from the fact that someone can make a song like this. It makes me feel like picking myself up after Iâve just been knocked down by lifeâ¦â¦ Picking myself up, giving myself a brisk shake, and sauntering off into the future, whatever it may bring. âTo the Lightâ is an inspiration.
âEnemyâ is a high energy track and Menelaosâ voice makes me think of the singer from Nickelback. This tune rocks and Iâm really digging the guitar work in this one. This is some amazing musicianship and Iâm starting to understand the talent that is pouring into my ears through my crystal clear headphones. Still keeping in mind the theme of divorce, the lyrics are again very deep and thought provoking. I have never been married, which means I have likewise never been divorced, but Iâm beginning to think this album can reach many people from all around the globe regardless of what the message is or what people have been through.
The third track, âLive and Die,â is another hard hitting tune and again the musicianship is fascinating. However, the musicianship is secondary in this song. The lyrics of âLive and Dieâ should be heard and listened to by everyone. Menelaos has something important to say here. âThereâs more to this life than to live and die.â Indeed. Iâm really starting to like this guy.
âBreak Me Downâ is another rockinâ piece of musical bliss despite the harsh reality of the words. Menelaos hits home with this one. Heâs fighting back now. Heâs feeling his strength and letting everyone know that nothing is going to break him down. This track makes me feel strong too. And itâs not just the lyrics. There is some seriously wicked guitar work happening here and itâs phenomenal.
âThe Lieâ tones it down a notch and this is more of a sad song even though it still kicks. It deals with love and lies and trying to move on but not wanting to. Being caught in something that simply canât work, but being afraid to let it go. This album gets deeper and deeper the more I listen to it, and the music gets better and better.
Track six, âMemories,â breaks it down even further. I very much enjoy the softer feel of this song and the rhythm of it. Itâs a haunting tune and anyone who has ever been hurt can certainly relate to it. I also get a much better sense of Menelaosâ vocal abilities. His voice is clear and clean on this track and I can hear the obvious talent that resides in those vocal cords. âMemoriesâ is very nicely done and the quiet dignity in which Menelaos pours his heart out is touching.
âCold,â which is the title track, starts off with a guitar riff that leads perfectly into Menelaosâ melodic vocals and then some hard hitting chords that takes this song to a new level. This is a brutal song. This is when reality sets in and the harshness of the situation is apparent. This is when the emotions start to get more complicated, and at the same time, they are simplified. Like turning off a switch. Shutting it down. Going cold. There is some anger in this track and thatâs what makes it just about perfect. Itâs about time I heard some anger on this album.
âBeliefâ begins with a softer and more melodic beat and I like this one already. I can tell itâs another deep one, rife with emotions. The lyrics are incredible and I feel things stir within me that have been dormant for some time. âBeliefâ is one of those songs that can be listening to over and over again, and each time it is heard, there is something new to be learned.
The ninth track, âMine Again,â kicks it up a notch and I can sense the frustration of having lost someone, having parted ways, and trying to figure out what the hell to do now. I can sense great strength and determination in this song and it does me good. It makes me feel like I can overcome the hard times. It makes me feel like fighting for myself. I can find my own way home, just as Menelaos has done.
âThe Signâ is a tune about searching, trying to find some THING, anything, to make it better. It has a desperate feel to it and yet it simply rocks. I was getting caught up in the story of this album and the lyrics, and I have committed a grave error. I have forgotten that this is a talented group of musicians. This song makes me remember that. The quality of âThe Signâ has brought me back to the here and now and has made me realize that these guys can PLAY. Nice work.
âDesireâ is clearly a hard core song from the first notes to the last. Sexy, hot, and dark, this is one of the best tracks on the album. Menelaos nails it, figuratively speaking, with this track. One night standsâ¦â¦ Yeah, they work for a short while, perhaps even one whole night, but it doesnât take anything away or give anything back. All that aside, this is a great song and if I were to chose a single, this would be it.
âGoneâ is full of hope and this saga is almost at an end. Menelaos sums it up well with this track. There is anger, despair, longing, love, hate, hope, fear, strengthâ¦â¦ There is a wide range of emotions in this song and the music itself compliments it perfectly. âGoneâ lets us know that life goes on, no matter what, and that we DO survive, somehow.
The closing track, âThe Wind Blows,â is the final chapter of this story. Menelaos has decided to move on, and even though it will always hurt and pieces will always be missing, this song makes us understand that perhaps thatâs alright. For every painful moment, there is a happy one. For every piece that is missing, there is another one waiting to be born. âThe Wind Blowsâ ends this album on an optimistic note, and that was clearly the best way to close this one out.
Afflicted has taken us through the many stages of a break up and they have done it without being sad, sappy, or overly indulgent. This is the way rock ânâ roll people break up. The lyrics throughout the album are exceedingly well thought out and they hit home, not just for me, but for everyone. The musicianship is absolutely fantastic and the entire album is carefully crafted, well produced and finely written. Menelaos has done himself proud with this album, but more importantly, he has done himself proud by writing what he was feeling and getting through it. No one likes to be hurt, but if being hurt creates music like this, then there is, at the very least, a silver lining. Much love and many cheers.
Reviewed by Rhonda Readence
Music Journalist ( USA )
in partnership with CDbaby
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