Remember when rock and roll had a hard edge and was about little more than being cool and energetic? ZO2 calls for a return to this spontaneous, fun, hard, showy attitude of music […]
Remember when rock and roll had a hard edge and was about little more than being cool and energetic? ZO2 calls for a return to this spontaneous, fun, hard, showy attitude of music. America’s answer to the Darkness puts on a show reminiscent of a guitar wielding 80’s band, and it is no coincidence that ZO2 has opened for bands such as Kiss and Poison on their tour together. The band fuses the music scene gathering new fans of a refreshing sound and the old eighties headbangers alike.
The music is as sharp as a knife, kept simple with only three band members, but it does not seem that any one of them ever takes a break. The heart thumping rhythm is thrashed over by a squealing distorted guitar sound that shows off the talents of a rocker that has studied his classic metal riffs. Unlike most metal bands today, ZO2 is not overtly dark. They bring back the light hearted hedonism that was ever so popular in the eighties, and they do it in style.
ZO2 is a whirlwind on stage. I have seen several concerts where I am impressed by the activity of the band, but ZO2 makes me suspicious of some sort of device that is feeding intravenous cocaine directly into the band members. The action never stops as they wail and scream each note be it guitar or vocal, and a surviving drum kit post-show, is a real testament to the maker of that kit. Yet despite all of the visual and auditory chaos the band keeps a tight sound that would impress any music aficionado. A ticket to ZO2 is less like a concert, and more like an experience – a really good, hardcore, mind blowing experience.
The albums by ZO2 suffer from what any amazing live bands experience. The sound just does not translate as well in the studio. This is not to say that Tuesdays and Thursdays and Ain’t It Beautiful will not leave you unsatisfied. Both albums offer up a delicious taste of classic metal worship. The vocals are piercing and demand attention, the guitar riffs are chunky when they need to be and sharp as a razor when called for, and the rhythm is solid and loud. They are definitely the perfect albums for a long drive, and much more compact then fitting the live concert in your trunk. Yet, some songs will make you long for that live experience and that will sustain the band for years to come.
ZO2 has redefined the metal scene by taking back a few decades. The music is raw yet polished, heartfelt and hedonistic, and will leave you drooling for more. Tight leather pants, ripped t-shirts, and long hair has never been this cool—well, since the eighties at least. If you are a teenager, grab a copy of one of their albums, you are going to love it, although you may also find yourself hiding it from your eighties loving parents. I would recommend either CD, but I would trade it for a live ZO2 show any day.
For music samples, merchandise and more, go to:
ZO2 Official Website
More reviews by Taylor Kuykendall can be found at www.taykuy.com