CRNKSHFT, hailing from Vancouver, BC, Canada are in their own words – “Hard as F*ck.”  Citing influences from the sounds of Alice In Chains, Five Finger Death Punch and Godsmack, CRNKSHFT are carving out their own sound as a mix of all influences in the vein of Breaking Benjamin, Alter Bridge, Shinedown, and Black Stone Cherry with the newly released self-titled EP.  Their sound gets the feet tapping, the head banging and it is easy to sing along to the choruses.

The opener, Systematic, is a rollicking ride with some cool licks driving the second verse and a real grooving chorus that chugs along.  Heavy distortion, pounding drums, along with disturbed lyrics, the songs topic tackles what happens when someone is subjected to systematic abuse and finding the power to break free. The singing is reminiscent of Sully Erna from Godsmack and at times powerful screams  finish off the song.

Tears Me Apart opens with a riff that wouldn’t be out of place on an Alter Bridge album, then morphs into Alice in Chains through both the riff and singing of the first verse.  Screams similar to early Drowning Pool are interspersed throughout the verses. Solos are accompanied by a great backing breakdown-like beat.

Old Habits continues the heavy Godsmack influence.  A nice simple bass driven riff is present throughout this song and probably the best of the solos is given in this track.

Finally Breaking The Silence rounds out the EP nicely with a little more Alice In Chains / Soundgarden sounding track.  Vocalist, Shane ‘Shanr’ Jolie adds a bit more screaming in this song compared to the others, but it’s still not over the top and fits in nicely with the song itself.

While the EP is only 4 songs long, it is enough of a teaser into this band that I am looking forward to a full release from these guys.  Produced by Daren Grahn (Metallica, Hedley, Motley Crue, and Bon Jovi) this Self-Titled EP was released on March 24 2017.