Zodiac
A Bit of Devil


4.0
excellent

Review

by Alex Kugaczewski USER (8 Reviews)
December 31st, 2012 | 14 replies | 2,489 views


Release Date: 2012 | Tracklist

Review Summary: There's definitely some thunder in Zodiac's machine.

5 of 5 thought this review was well written

Saying that the seventies rock revival is going strong would be a severe understatement. From Graveyard’s highly anticipated third full-length Lights Out to Witchcraft’s excellent Legend, fans of the movement found plenty to tap their feet to, and it wasn’t just the fans, as both records were lauded by critics as well. While the vanguard kept on rocking, new, noteworthy bands rose out of utter obscurity into the ears of eager listeners at a staggering rate. With newcomers such as Kadavar and Troubled Horse, competition for the “best retro rock album of 2012” award was becoming tense. Here’s the thing, though: none of the bands mentioned previously earned that award. Charging through the gates of 70’s worship with commanding authority is the movement’s best-kept secret of the year, Zodiac, whose album, A Bit of Devil, rocks – really rocks.

One of the many impressive aspects of this dark horse album is that, despite being the band’s first, it doesn't feel like a debut; A Bit of Devil radiates a level of confidence that many bands never achieve during their careers, and this confidence is rightly earned when you look at the line-up, featuring Long Distance Calling’s Janosch Rathmer on percussion duty and Nick Van Delft, who, despite being a newcomer to the music scene, shows off some serious guitar work and vocal performances throughout the album. The second track, “Carnival,” has these two at their best, with Rathmer’s frenetic fills driving the chorus and Delft’s formidable soloing bringing the track to an exhilarating close. This isn't to say that the rest of the band should be marginalized – they play their parts to great effect, such as on the bluesy, acoustic-driven “Thunder,” where an infectious beat and bass line carry the track straight into your memory. “Thunder” also serves to show Delft’s vocals, which, while not exhibiting exceptional range, are undoubtedly rough and “stylish,” feeling genuine and true to the genre.

Unlike the bands mentioned previously, Zodiac sets itself apart by adopting a southern rock edge that echoes ZZ Top and the Allman Brothers Band, an aspect of the group’s sound that is found throughout the record. The opening riff of “Diamond Shoes” leads the listener for mere moments before exploding with the intensity of Texan heat. Track three, however, exemplifies Zodiac’s southern rock style with a smoking hot cover of ZZ Top’s “Blue Jean Blues,” which takes the classic blues number and injects it with 8ccs of hard rock energy. In a word, its killer.

The album’s four remaining tracks weren’t neglected for lack of interest or quality in the music, but for the sake of the review’s brevity. Frankly, most of the songs here could be drawn like straws and understandably be called a highlight, from the smashing title track to epic album closer, “Coming Home.” With Zodiac having dropped a hint for new songs coming next year, the seventies revival movement is all the more valuable to rock fans willing to travel back in time. For now, though, listeners can bob their heads in satisfaction, because A Bit of Devil is the year’s best retro rock release.



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user ratings (7)
Chart.
3.7
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Underflow
December 31st 2012



2526 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

A Bit of Devil - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8hKZ6GLAZS8
Diamond Shoes - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TFDaX2fb-CQ
Thunder - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_sN0TnAA_9c
Coming Home - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qHu-6AJFWkQ

I'm pretty happy to have my first review approved and up.

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
December 31st 2012



5918 Comments


In your recommended albums, change "Graveyard" to "Graveyard (SWE)".



Edit:

Also,



A Bit of Devil radiates a level confidence

a level of confidence.



that many bands never achieve much further into their careers

that many bands never achieved during their careers.




Very well written review for a first, pos.

Digging: Essence Beyond - Carnivalism

Underflow
December 31st 2012



2526 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Ah, good call. Thanks for the tip. Hope you enjoy this as much as I did.

Underflow
December 31st 2012



2526 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Yeah, thanks for those. I got a bit excited near the end of the revision process lol.

SgtPepper
Staff Reviewer
December 31st 2012



4381 Comments


Hmm, I've never heard of these guys but they sound interesting.

Great job on the review, Have a POS, mate.

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
December 31st 2012



5918 Comments


I still need to get around that second Horisont album, the first one was huge.

Underflow
December 31st 2012



2526 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Second Assault is solid.

Mad.
December 31st 2012



3587 Comments


Decent review, I better check these guys out.

Digging: Dwellers - Pagan Fruit

MikeC26
March 20th 2013



3146 Comments


decent review? more like awesome review!

have a pos my friend. will check these guys out

Mad.
March 21st 2013



3587 Comments


This stuff's pretty good.

Underflow
March 21st 2013



2526 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Yeah dude, the new one is gonna thump hard.

Underflow
June 9th 2013



2526 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

New songs being recorded, can't wait.

Mad.
June 9th 2013



3587 Comments


Awesome, I reckon it'll be even better

manosg
May 16th 2014



5720 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is extremely solid. Modern blues rock can't get better than this one for me. Excellent guitar playing too.



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