Monday 18 May 2015

Zombi - 'The Zombi Anthology' (Album Review)

Album Type: Full Length
Date Released: 21/04/2015
Label: Relapse Records

‘The Zombi Anthology’ CD//DD//LP track listing:

1). Sequence 1
2). Sequence 2
3). Sequence 3
4). Sequence 4
5). Sequence 5
6). Sequence 6
7). Sequence 7
8). Sequence 8
9). Sequnce 8 (Alternate Version)
10). Gemini, Pt. 2
11). Twilight Sentinel
12). DMC-12

Zombi is:

Steve Moore
A.E. Paterra


For fans of late 70's, early 80's horror and sci-fi movies, Zombi provides the ultimate soundtrack to a time when good guys and bad guys alike had mullets, dangly ear rings, and lazer sights on their pistols.  A time when cars exploded for no reason and international terrorists stole floppy disks containing industrial secrets and sold them to the highest bidder. A time when karate could solve all your problems and the undead walked the streets at night. If you enjoy Lamborghinis jumping hundreds of feet, landing unscathed, or motorcycles traveling through time, then listen to any Zombi record.

Zombi is a Pittsburgh-based instrumental duo, featuring Steve Moore on Keyboards and bass guitar, and Anthony Paterra on the drumset. The band is inspired by movie soundtracks of the past, think John Carpenter meets Neil Peart. Collecting tracks from their first 2 EP's, the Anthology is now available for the first time on vinyl, thanks to Relapse Records. 

The keyboards are thick and lush, but the virtuoso drumming of the band's later recordings is largely absent.  Instead, the first 9 tracks feature simple programmed drum loops that serve as a basic accompaniment to the eerie keyboard arrangements. As an avid Zombi fan and regular listener of their other albums, I was a bit thrown by the lack of a live drumset on this release, but once my ears adjusted, I could appreciate this album for what it is: a document of a great band in its early stages and the soundtrack to a non-existent horror/sci-fi movie.  The movie would be dark, low budget, gritty and violent, set in a dystopian future. There would definitely be cyborgs-- maybe an army of zombified cyborg hybrids with lazer cannons on their shoulders.  There would be creepy chase scenes through dark labyrinths, heads exploding, and karate, lots of karate.

The opening track, "Sequence 1," is a creepy, slow-paced piece in the lower register that conjures images of reanimated corpses lumbering through dark alleyways. I could see myself cranking this one on Halloween to scare the pants off young trick-or-treaters. As you progress through the album, each song could be the background music to a different movie scene. A slow pan through the laboratory of an evil corporation, then protagonists desperately climbing through airducts, with zombies clawing at their heels. You get the idea.

The final track on the album, "DMC-12," launches in with a furious prog-inspired drum assault. This is the kind of drumming you find throughout their later albums: fiery, thoughtful, and perfectly executed.  It's a truly fun album that serves as a solid prequel to the band's first official release (and my personal favorite), 2004's ‘Cosmos’. If you've ever seen a Dario Argento film or Tom Selleck's Runaway, you'll understand what this album is trying to achieve. I can't wait to pick this up on vinyl.

Words by: Doza Hawes

‘The Zombi Anthology’ is available here

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