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Title - Afterlife / Donít Kill the Thrill
Artist - Blackthorne

For those unaware, the albums Afterlife and Donít Kill The Thrill from hard rock supergroup Blackthorne will be released in a special 2CD pack, including reworked bonus tracks and previously unreleased content through The Store For Music on July 30th, 2021.

Blackthorne was a combination of some seriously heavyweight talents; Vocalist Graham Bonnet (Rainbow, Michael Schenker Group), Guitarist Bob Kulick (Kiss, Meat Loaf, Michael Bolton), Keyboard Player Jimmy Waldo (New England).

Add to that the fact that Waldo, together with drummer Frankie Banali and bassist Chuck Wright, had all been in Quiet Riot, while Bonnet and Waldo had previously worked together in Alcatrazz and the sheer power captured on Afterlife and Donít Kill The Thrill comes as no surprise.

Afterlife was the bandís only official studio release, coming in 1993, whilst Donít Kill The Thrill was a compilation that followed in 2016.

Add in to this mix a fascinating mix of extras including unreleased demos and live takes and this package represents not only a great introduction to this great band, but also some serious value.

CD1: Afterlife
1. Cradle To The Grave
2. Afterlife
3. We Wonít Be Forgotten
4. Breaking The Chains
5. Over And Over
6. Hard Feelings
7. Baby Youíre The Blood
8. Sex Crime
9. Love From The Ashes
10. All Night Long
11. Wild Inside (Demo Cassette 1992) [Bonus Track]
12. Get My Heart Out Of Here (Demo 1992) [Bonus Track]
13. Since You Been Gone (Demo 1992 Vocal 2018) [Bonus Track]
14. Afterlife (Original Demo Mix) (Tony Palacios Guitar) [Bonus Track]
15. Baby Youíre The Blood (Demo 1992) [Bonus Track]
16. Afterlife (Live Unplugged) [Bonus Track]
17. We Wonít Be Forgotten (Live Unplugged) [Bonus Track]

Afterlife was originally released in 1993, an era when grunge ruled the music world and most classic hard rock, and metal, was considered outdated at that time.

Sadly the album didnít sell much at the time due to the changing musical landscape but has, over the years, aged like fine wine and become an underrated gem, much like Blackthorne itself.

This reissue of Afterlife features seven unreleased bonus tracks including both demos and live tracks and opens with the thunderous rock íní roll of Cradle To The Grave and the pounding title track Afterlife and then we get the guitar driven We Wonít Be Forgotten, the frenetic Breaking The Chains, the mid-tempo rock of both Over And Over and Hard Feelings, the free flowing AOR of Baby Youíre The Blood, with the original album rounding out on the angst-ridden Sex Crime, the totally rocking Love From The Ashes, closing on Bonnetís cover of his own-sung Rainbow hit All Night Long.

The AOR beauty Wild Inside (Demo Cassette 1992) is a brilliant addition to this CD and is backed by the rocker Get My Heart Out Of Here (Demo 1992), before Bonnet again brings us his own-sung, albeit here rather low key) Rainbow hit Since You Been Gone (Demo 1992 Vocal 2018), before launching into another cut of Afterlife (Original Demo Mix, Tony Palacios Guitar), now closing on the lush AOR of Baby Youíre The Blood (Demo 1992), a wickedly raw coupling of both Afterlife (Live Unplugged) and We Wonít Be Forgotten (Live Unplugged).

CD2: Donít Kill The Thrill
1. Donít Kill The Thrill
2. Wild Inside
3. Skeletons In The Closet
4. Dreaming In The Hideaway
5. Man In A Black Hat
6. Twist The Blade
7. Judgement Day
8. Insanity
9. Sanctuary (Alternate Vocal)
10. Save Me
11. Paralyzed (Early Demo) [Bonus Track]
12. Twist The Blade [Early Demo] [Bonus Track]
13. Guilty Of Insanity [Early Demo] [Bonus Track]
14. Afterlife [Demo 1992] [Bonus Track]
15. We Wonít Be Forgotten (Demo 1992) [Bonus Track]
16. Over And Over (Demo 1992] [Bonus Track]
17. Baby Youíre The Blood (Demo 1992) [Bonus Track]
18. Love From The Ashes (Demo 1992] [Bonus Track]

Prior to disbanding, Blackthorne recorded a second album entitled Donít Kill the Thrill, but the album was shelved when Bonnet left the group. It remained unreleased for over two decades.

But good things come to those who wait, and the album is now released and contains not only the original ten tracks recorded for the album but also eight additional unreleased demos included as bonus tracks.

This fantastic compilation opens with the cannonade of Donít Kill The Thrill and the AOR pulsed of Wild Inside, following those up with the earnest rock of Skeletons In The Closet, the late 80ís / early 90ís guitar rock of Dreaming In The Hideaway, the thumping Man In A Black Hat, the gently frenetic Twist The Blade, and then comes the soaring Judgement Day, with the original album rounding out on the rapturous Insanity, the drum-led rock of Sanctuary (Alternate Vocal), closing on the helter-skelter ambiance of Save Me.

The bonus tracks lead off with the yearning rock of Paralyzed (Early Demo) and another great Twist The Blade [Early Demo], backing those up with the harder-edged AOR of Guilty Of Insanity [Early Demo], another version of Afterlife [Demo 1992], the cultured layered guitar work of We Wonít Be Forgotten (Demo 1992), and then rounds out with the early 90ís rock vibe of Over And Over (Demo 1992] and the pop rock of Baby Youíre The Blood (Demo 1992), closing on the light rock fare of Love From The Ashes (Demo 1992].

Amazon Purchase Link

Afterlife - Acoustic Version [Official Video]

Hard Feelings [from Afterlife]