Six years between albums kills momentum, especially with a three-year delay between recording and release. Austin trio American Sharks make up for the unexpected time shift with pure energy on its sophomore un-slump 11:11. Opening tracks "Let Me Go" and "Spare the Rod" blaze by in a rush that jolts the heart like Red Bull, yet there's more to the band's punky metal than just adrenaline. Actual songcraft underpins the thrashing "Landslide" and chugging "White Witch" as the locals show off improved chops, tighter arrangements, and a refined sense of melody. Even so, tempos still stomp like a car with no brakes – or, on "Alcohol" and "KLUDU," a hippopotamus with attitude – so wild-eyed enthusiasm still rules the performances. There's a simple confidence that tracks won't fall into complete chaos, making the material punch harder and more effectively.
Copyright © 2022 Austin Chronicle Corporation. All rights reserved.