THEODORE ZIRAS – Hyperpyrexia

  • 9/10
    THEODORE ZIRAS - Hyperpyrexia - 9/10


Sleasy Rider Records
Release date: November 1, 2007

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

The Greek name Theodore Ziras might not ring any bells with a lot of Metal fans or guitar enthusiasts, which is unfortunate, as Ziras has been around for some odd six years. Ziras is one of those unknown, aspiring guitar heroes who quietly released two rather worthwhile platters of Neo-Classical/Shred guitar instrumental music back in 2001 and 2003 respectively. In 2005, Ziras let the fates decide his fortune, as he became part of vocal based project, a Progressive Metal group called Euroforce. It took Euroforce almost two years of recordings to put together a solid debut disc, again perhaps a not too common household name. Four years after his last solo instrumental effort Ziras has decided to quite literally take “the bull by the horns” by jacking up the stakes on his newest release, as if to proclaim that he will not be denied the fame that is now rightfully his.

Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary describes Hyperpyrexia as a noun to mean “exceptionally high fever (as in a particular disease)”, which is exactly what Ziras was feeling during the composing and recording of this CD. Once again it’s taken him almost two years to complete this offering but the patience applied to the details has shown through in the end product.

This is actually the first of his three solo albums that has allowed him to record with a full-fledged band. In raising the stakes, Ziras managed to pull keyboardist extraordinaire, Derek Sherinian (ex-Dream Theater, Malmsteen, Billy Idol) and top-notch drummer Brian Tichy (Ozzy, Zakk Wylde, Billy Idol) into the fold. Sherinian actually had quite a hand in this project by helping during the recording sessions, mixing and production. Ziras has returned the favor in spades by affording Sherinian quite a bit of “air time”, so much so, that at times it’s easy to forget whose solo album it is.

From end to end this CD is chock full of professional instrumental music most of which is high throttle guitar led Melodic Shred Rock. Nowadays a lot of guitar instrumental releases tend to borrow a lot from Satriani and Vai … Hyperpyrexia has a minimal amount of those influences and tends to tread closer to the early vintage years of MacAlpine or Vinnie Moore but with more focus on melody.

With that being said, the CD opens with a mid-tempo Rocker entitled “Child Of Scotland” which is actually the most unimpressive of the ten tracks offered here but ironically sounds very early “MacAlpine-ish”. The release really kicks into high gear with track two called “Such And Such” which, in another contradictory twist, is actually a tribute to Satriani! This one fires on all cylinders and is actually quite indicative of the rest of the release … fast paced, power drumming, shred guitar, and those trademark Sherinian keys. Overall, Hyperpyrexia melts the covering off of Ziras’ other two solo CDs … so be prepared to be kicked in the groin!

Each track offered here is endowed with enough musical theory to provoke any guitar aficionado into convulsive “wet dreams”! Everything from “Rapid Eye Movement”, with its solo consisting of runs at 280 beats per minute, to the 7/8 time signatures and Phrygian Dominant melodies in “Seven Courses” to the “East Orient” melody in “Go East”. All of this is accomplished while keeping a strong attention on melody and more importantly to writing complex, entertaining and memorable songs!

Overall, Hyperpyrexia has to be one of the top guitar instrumental releases unleashed in 2007 that most people didn’t even know came into being. Ziras has the looks, musical theory, composition skills and chops to succeed and become the next deserving guitar hero of the modern age! It’s somewhat amazing that Lion Music let this one slip under their radar. Any guitar enthusiast, especially fans of Tony MacAlpine or Vinnie Moore, would be doing an injustice if they didn’t pursue getting their hands on a copy of this release!

While you’re thinking about it take a look and listen at this teaser trailer for this excellent CD:


Theodore Ziras – Guitars, Compositions, Arrangements, Production
Derek Sherinian – Keyboards
Brian Tichy – Drums
Manos Markopoulos – Bass


  • Scott Jeslis

    Scott is one of the partners at Metal Express Radio. He handles a lot of Metal Express Radio's public relations, screening of new music and radio scheduling. On occasion, he also does reviews and interviews. He has been a proud member of the Metal Express Radio crew since 2004.

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