March 4, 2019 Tesla – Shock (Album Review)
In a decade where over the top, teased hair, guyliner, and spandex ruled Hard Rock, bands like RATT, Mötley Crüe, and Poison gave the music of the 1980s its fair share of visual entertainment. On other end of the spectrum, there were acts like Tesla. Hailing from Sacramento, California, Tesla were never your typical ’80s Rock band. No, not for one moment were Tesla ever about image. Just being themselves, Tesla’s identity was that of a t-shirt and jeans wearing, tight as nails, pleasing Rock-n-Roll band, take it or leave it!
Following a six year hiatus, Tesla reunited in 2000 and returned to rocking audiences around the world all the while adding three albums of new music to their acclaimed catalog. So, how does Tesla plan to kick things off in 2019? Well, with fifteen million albums sold worldwide, Tesla are ready to drop their eighth overall studio album, Shock, set for release on March 8, 2019 via Universal Music Enterprise (UME).
As the follow-up to Tesla’s chart-topping 2014 release Simplicity, the band’s newest endeavor, Shock, was co-written and produced by a good friend, Guitarist Phil Collen of Def Leppard, giving the album that much more juice to Rock.
Plugging in and cranking the volume to eleven, Tesla’s Shock is led by the single of the same name, “Shock.” Electrifying as ever, Tesla’s introductory track to the new album sees the band sounding fearless and ready to take on all comers. Keeping that thought, Shock opens via a trademark song title for Tesla, “You Won’t Take Me Alive.” Stepping into the ring, track one delivers high energy riffs and rhythms that encourage you to stand-up and pump your fist in the air. Next, “Taste Like” is invigorating with an AC/DC like hook and a classic Tesla melody.
If there is one thing Tesla has always been known for, it is great song-writing, especially for ballads and slower numbers (“Love Song,” “Song and Emotion”). In 2019, Shock holds no exceptions as the album showcases perhaps Tesla’s best balladry. First, “We Can Rule The World” is a quintessential Rock ballad, full of orchestration which takes you way back to the days of the Beatles. Then, “Love Is A Fire” burns with a big chorus, piano, a compelling tone, and exquisite harmony. Last in the category, “Forever Loving You” is yet another adventure back to the sounds of the 1960s and 1970s.
Turning things up again, Shock offers even more rockers such as “California Summer Song,” which is exactly as it sounds, a laid back, reminiscent celebration of living life in the sun. Even more notable cuts, “The Mission” will take you places, the gutsy “Tied To The Tracks” beckons back to 1994’s Bust A Nut, “Afterlife” includes a mandolin driven chorus, and the wishful “I Want Everything” makes way for the album closer “Comfort Zone.”
As Tesla’s best album since reuniting years ago, Shock, is yet another stimulating piece of Rock by one of the best bands to emerge from the 1980s. Truth be told, Shock hits all the right chords with not one bad song or filler track. Overall, Tesla sound amazing on Shock. The band has never lost their touch for creating perfect harmony, melody, and the feel of what great Rock-n-Roll music stands for. A must have for Tesla’s loyal fans, Cryptic Rock gives Shock 4.5 out of 5 stars.