Zao
Zao


4.0
excellent

Review

by Nate USER (4 Reviews)
January 10th, 2013 | 52 replies


Release Date: 2001 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Zao's style changes drastically for better or worse with this experimental album.

You think Zao would of disbanded already. The amount of times they threatened to quit is sheer hilarity. I mean don't get me wrong, I love this band, but come on. Even after touring this album, they "broke up" right on stage. As for the album itself, it is quite a change from the days of Blood and Fire and Liberate, thanks due to the electric drumming of Jesse Smith.

The album opens up with 5 year winter, which is one of the stronger songs on the album. Scott and Jesse (who is also working guitar) decides to show a bit more technicality that was lacking in previous albums. Right near the halfway point a short solo is played, odd for Zao, but it suits the mood and adds to the build up of the conclusion. Dan screaming out "burn it down and walk away" is one of those moments that makes shivers go down your spine. After this there is a sort of instrumental in which Jesse uses the V-drums to provide a catchy yet simple beat.

At the halfway point we are greeted with "Trashcanhands" which is one of Zao's more recognized songs. Electronic vocals backup Dan's to add to the atmosphere which actually improves instead of decaying the quality. The riffs of this song are much more similar to those of Liberate, which fans of previous Zao albums will be pleased with. We are followed by "The Race of Standing Still", which is my personal favourite of this album. The softer intro to this song may come as a surpise, and is not unlike the Intro to Liberate. However, after this we are greeted with slow chant-like vocals that will have nearly any metal fan headbanging. The song stretches this chant for longer sections, but never seems to grow old.

This album is not perfect however, and the drums sometimes seem lacking in certain parts. Particularly in "The End of His World", which is one of the weaker songs on the album. The drums lack depth, and sound much more generic then most of the other songs on here. The vocal shouts and screams of Scott and Jesse do not help to add anything either, but this was experimental so who can blame them for making a couple of mistakes.

Luckily Zao knows how to write excellent album closers, and "At Zero" is definitely one of their finest. Right away we are shocked again with the technicality that Scott shows. The drums are blazing fast as well in this song. Dan's deep growls are no less exceptional. The riffs change tempo several times, but this only seems to enhance the song. Overall this album is much different then most Zao albums, but is not one to be taken lightly. Zao is no less in aggression and darkness, and the experimentation of electronic drums mostly helped feed the album rather then detract.

Pro's
Dan's vocals never falter throughout the album
A bit more technicality never hurt anyone

Con's
V-drums take some getting used to
Occasional screams of Jesse seem unnecessary

Strongest Songs
The Race of Standing Still
5 Year Winter
At Zero


user ratings (157)
Chart.
3.8
excellent
other reviews of this album
donovan909 (3.5)
Zao find themselves creating some of their finest moments alongside some of their weakest tracks....


Comments:Add a Comment 
JokineAugustus
January 9th 2013


6052 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Dunno how I did for this. Maybe I referenced previous albums too much.

Digging: Pensive/Seasons in The Field - Pensive/Seasons in The Field

Propose
January 10th 2013


808 Comments


this doesnt sound like it would appeal to me, will avoid!

VheissuCrisis
Contributing Reviewer
January 10th 2013


971 Comments


Tried to listen to these guys and didn't enjoy, decent review nonetheless.

AtomicWaste
Staff Reviewer
January 10th 2013


1992 Comments


Grammar, man.

SadAndHolyGlow
January 10th 2013


1521 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Haha, you stole the summary I was gonna use. Great review.

Digging: Death From Above 1979 - You're a Woman, I'm a Machine

IdiotequeCigar
January 10th 2013


358 Comments


Wow, you're original, commenting on a Zao thread

JokineAugustus
January 10th 2013


6052 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I write the reviews, he comments on them. Teamwork guys.

IdiotequeCigar
January 10th 2013


358 Comments


Spare me the bullshit

JokineAugustus
January 10th 2013


6052 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Your reviews are laughable.

JokineAugustus
January 16th 2013


6052 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

No one listens to Zao anymore I guess.

SadAndHolyGlow
January 18th 2013


1521 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Wow, dude. Jokine and I are just Zao buddies. Chill out.

Suddy911
June 25th 2013


1191 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

witch hunter is bad ass

JokineAugustus
August 3rd 2013


6052 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Probably 5th zao, though Parade is pretty much tied.

Suddy911
August 3rd 2013


1191 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

this is 2nd

suddykilljaywalkers
December 8th 2013


471 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

this is tied with liberate for fav zao

suddykilljaywalkers
December 8th 2013


471 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I WISH THAT YOU WOULD SAY YOU HATE ME THAT WOULD MAKE IT SO MUCH EASIER

Futures
December 8th 2013


10782 Comments


BURN IT DOWN AND WALK AWAY

Digging: Death From Above 1979 - The Physical World

suddykilljaywalkers
December 8th 2013


471 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

tool to scream is so ferocious

BigPleb
December 9th 2013


36683 Comments


This is rippin.

Digging: Arc Iris - Arc Iris

suddykilljaywalkers
December 9th 2013


471 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I know this sounds weird but it's better to go into this one knowing about the bands lineup and history at the time



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