It’s been five long years since Zombi’s last release, the epic Shape Shift. In-between then and now both Steve Moore and AE Paterra have put out an impressive amount of work on their own. Paterra as Majeure, both with Temporary Residence and with Holodeck Records on last year’s excellent Mass Flashback. Moore has been prolific with his scores, including the films The Mind’s Eye, Mayhem, Bliss, and VFW. Moore also released a solo album last year called Beloved Exile(also on Temporary Residence.) So even though there hasn’t been a Zombi record in five years, Moore and Paterra have kept extremely busy writing, recording, and honing their creative muscles.
But thankfully, the wait is over.
On July 17th Steve Moore and AE Paterra, aka Zombi, will be releasing their 8th full-length LP on Relapse Records titled 2020. Not only is this their 8th full-length, but it marks the band’s 20th anniversary as Zombi. 20 years blowing minds with drum/bass/synth prowess and Rush-like agility; prog muscle mixed with far out, deep space jams and horror vibes combined by two cats from Pittsburgh that created a definitive, one-of-a-kind sound.
The Zombi sound.
I can’t tell you how excited I am for this record. I started my Zombi journey in 2013, well into their career, with Escape Velocity. I’m not sure why I started there, other than maybe it was the only one available at the time that my local record shop could get their hands on. Or maybe because there was a bare ass on the cover. Either way, it was a proper starting point for me. The album completely kicked my ass, and grabbing it right around Halloween made it extra special. I can remember driving my kids around on a cold and rainy Halloween and listening to tracks like “Slow Oscillations”, “Shrunken Heads”, and the almost melancholy “Time of Troubles” as they knocked on doors and offered the phrase “Trick or treat” in trade for fun size Snickers and Three Musketeers. From there I was hooked.
2020, according to the band, is Zombi’s most ambitious record yet. Nine tracks long with titles like “Earthscraper”, “XYZT”, “Fifth Point of the Pentangle”, and “Thoughforms”. The first single is the powerful and driving “Breakthrough & Conquer”. It’s just under four minutes and doesn’t waste a moment completely melting our faces off. It has an old school 80s metal feel, with Moore and Paterra locking into a serious drum and bass groove with synth interspersed tastefully. A standout among many on this track is the excellent guitar riffing by Trans Am’s Philip Manley. The guitar adds a whole new dimension to Zombi, giving the track an almost Euro metal vibe. Guitar definitely isn’t something Zombi needs, not by any means, but man this was a very cool surprise.
I’ve rambled enough. Head over to Zombi’s Bandcamp page and preorder 2020. This is the kind of record we need right about now. Welcome back, fellas.
2020 is out July 17th, 2020. Listen below, then do your duty and preorder.