Time Is Up

Available March 29th (US)



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 Havok – Time is Up



 Hailing from the land thereof (Germany, not the Bay Area…doh!) I am very fond of all things thrash and don’t take the subject lightly. And let’s be honest, there are no more ‘originators’ these days, everything has been done already by titans like Kreator, Destruction, Slayer, Testament, Overkill, Exodus (I’m gonna stop here; the list is way to long). But over the last couple of years bands like Warbringer, Evile, Lazarus A.D, and Bonded by Blood just to name a few have oversaturated the market with their ‘stuck in the 80’s’ mentality. So do we really need another Retro Thrash band? And the simple answer is: yes we do, because the thrash movement is well and alive; which brings me to the issue at hand.

 HAVOK are certainly not newcomers to the scene. Around since 2004 and founded in the suburbs of Denver, Colorado by guitarist David Sanchez they proved all the naysayers wrong and landed a deal with Candlelight Records for their maiden release BURN in 2009. Fast forward to 2011 and HAVOK will release their 2nd album, again on Candlelight, the end of March.

 TIME IS UP was chosen as the album title and I thought to myself, yap, dudes the time is up to mess around and show the ‘biz’ what you are all about. While BURN was a generic, let’s get our feet wet approach, the new album really showcases their knack for thrash.

General consensus is that a sophomore album will define a band; and make no mistake HAVOK did just that, they will be here to stay.Even a new band is not immune from the line-up change bug, so besides Sanchez (guitar, vocals) only Jessie de los Santos (bass) is left from the prior recording session. But with the addition of Reece Scruggs (guitar) and Pete Webber (drums) this new line up is solid as hell and the best so far.

 The album starts of very, very strong with “Prepare for Attack”, which couldn’t be a better title for the opening song, because your senses need to be prepared for things to come. The whole thing is extremely guitar oriented. Crushing, blazing riffs, awesome and melodic leads, a bass guitar that is auditable and to my delight heavy in the mix (yeah!) and not enough can be said about the percussion. Best move ever to bring Pete into the fold. His drumming really adds to the overall heaviness of the album. Dave’s vocals have also improved over the last release. His high pitched screams are better executed and the overall clarity of his voice makes every song a delight.

 A couple of the album highlights:

“Prepare for Attack” - Honestly, this track could be on any newer Destruction album and I was seriously wondering if Schmier was doing guest vocals. (Well, minus the accent).

“Fatal Intervention” - This song will be the one for the mosh pit to go apeshit.

“No Amnesty” and “Covering Fire” – Kreator anyone?

“D.O.A.” – chugs, chugs, screams, licks, drums galore.

“Killing Tendencies” – mid tempo song, maybe more on the traditional metal side with cool guitar solo.

“Scumbag in Disguise” – fast and furious with the most innovative guitar riffs on the album. Between this one and the opening track it’s a toss on which I like the most.

“The Cleric” – a lot more technical then other tracks, dual guitars gives the whole thing an epic feel to it without sounding cheesy. Megadeth, Destruction? I swear I hear Dave say “nailed to the cross” *lol*

“Out of My Way” – this is one where Dave experimented with different vocals, not my cup of tea. More riff oriented then solo parts.

“Time Is Up” – somehow reminds me of Anthrax right away.


TIME IS UP is clearly a step or ten above the last record. It’s tighter, flows better and can be credited to David Sanchez for the production, Pete Rutcho (Revocation) for mixing and James Murphy (Testament, Death) for mastering the album.The cover art work was once again done by Halsey Swain, and immediately Megadeth comes to mind. Don’t take my word, judge for yourself! Well, to sum it up, I hear a lot of Testament, Overkill, maybe even Death in the songs. But it’s not that HAVOK ripped off any of the aforementioned bands, it’s just that you definitely hear David’s major influences while writing the songs. Definitely pick this one up and give it a spin or two. And make sure you catch HAVOK on tour this year in a city near you.


4.75 out of 5

    Review by Birgit Haugen



1. Prepare for Attack

2. Fatal Intervention

3. No Amnesty

4. D.O.A.

 5. Covering Fire

 6. Killing Tendencies

7. Scumbag in Disguise

8. The Cleric

 9. Out of My Way


 10. Time Is Up
































































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