Their claim to fame and recognition was winning the first ever Campus Rock Idols competition in 2005. Delhi based band Prestorika certainly blew me away the fist time I ever saw them perform… I remember them doing Megadeth’s “Holy Wars… The Punishment Due” and I remember that they were the only band to do justice to Dave Mustaine’s awesome composition. So when I got hold of their 5-song EP, I expected a lot more of the thrash metal I knew they could deliver.
First up, the artwork… a very simple cover and sleeve, with angst ridden scratched out letters as the base font. Hey, there are no lyrics provided, so, it’s better to listen to the songs with keener interest levels.
The CD starts off with “Sycophant”, and right away you can guess that Prestorika have a huge 80’s influence, right from the vocals to the simple, yet ear-catching riffs. The chorus has a simple, flowing structure, while the bridge brings up modified, processed vocals. Hmm… We also find a very Kirk Hammet-ish solo, played obviously with less amounts of wah-wah and over a simple rhythm structure. The outro is pretty intense…
The next track is “Hoist My Soul”. Now, I didn’t expect to hear acoustic guitars at all, but hey, I won’t complain here. The intro sounds amazing, and when the electric guitar joins in (heavily distorted, let me add), this song does indeed sound great. The solo is clean, and the lyrics have also been well written. This song is not something I’d expected from Prestorika, but hey, a soft power-ballad does show your musical range. After all, it is an EP.
A sweet sounding drum-bass intro leads us into “His Mission”. Right from the start, this track has a very upbeat and “good” feel to it. What I like about the verse is the underlying bass pattern. Simplicity… the key to make anything and everything sound good. The chorus increases the tempo tremendously, but flows into a mellow interlude, which flows into another sweet solo, which move into totally Bay Area Thrash riffs. At around the 3:46 mark comes in a forgotten aspect of thrash – hidden messages, which is propagated here with growls. The ending solo ends off abruptly, and sounds incomplete, although it does show off the guitarists’ talent. Hmm…
“Here I’m Gone” is the shortest track here, and it starts off with a Maiden-ish harmony, but quickly fuses into the opening verse. The riffs which enter the song are again, very rock n’ roll based, and we find Prestorika paying tribute to Iron Maiden here, thanks to the use of the galloping style of strumming. The solo hits us at 2:16 and yet again, reminds me of a Dave Murray and Adrian Smith solo… Maiden fans, this one’s for you.
Synthesized intros bring us into the last track on offer, “Shameless Pride”. Undertones of alternative metal seeping in to the song, with more emphasis on vocals, but, everything changes once the guitars kick in with some really good riffs. Again, the tempo changes to give us another clean solo. And this time, it ends off into a small bass-solo. The interlude uses acoustics, and this time to, the guitars have been well used, for a lovely mood-change. However, once the vocals rise, and the scream is heard… I know what to expect… insane riffs… and I’m not disappointed… I just sit back, and let my head do the talking… very much like hearing an edited version of “Holy Wars”, with the guitarist shredding away to glory. And then, the song ends, yet again, leaving me feeling dissatisfied.
Well, I say this EP is indeed worth a listen. I really appreciate what Prestorika have come out with. The production quality is good enough. But there is one thing… two out of the five songs ended abruptly, and that leaves me in the dumps. Maybe if they plan on releasing a full length album soon, they can work on these songs and make them last longer, just to give them a sense of completion. The riffs on most tracks are very heavy metal… not thrash, mind you, except for the one riff in “Shameless Pride”. The bass and drums do accompany the guitars well, and the vocals are good enough. All in all, it is indeed a stepping stone to the upper heights for Prestorika.
My Top Songs: “His Mission” and “Shameless Pride” (despite the short outro solo)
Overall Rating: 7/10