2016 hasn’t been a particularly vintage year for new music for me so far, or maybe my view is just being tainted by the fact that the year seems hellbent on polishing off any musician I like who is over 50 years old. With the odd exception, Gregory Porter Take Me To The Alley and the Earthless/Harsh Toke split LP, I’ve got most of kicks from reissues and old shite so far.
Enter the Zig-Zags Running Out Of Red.
I was having an awful day on friday when my chum Andy had to drag me forcibly to the mighty Probe Records at lunchtime where I flicked listlessly through the new releases section looking for some kind of epiphany, when I stumbled across a stark black and red cover and a band I’d never heard of before. The hand-written Probe label on the cover promised ’80s thrash metal mixed with a NWOBHM sensibility’, I knew the record label Castleface were good and there was a track on the LP called ‘The Sadist’ and another called ‘No Brains, No Balls’. Sold! Sold! Sold!
Now I’ve been hurt this way before, but not this time. Running Out Of Red is just a brilliant shot of rock from the superb opener ‘They Came For Us’ with its brash Hawkwind-style riff, through to, personal fave, the punk metal ‘Afraid Of The Dark’. This gave me just the right amount of rock kicks and raw anger to banish a really pants day from memory, very therapeutic and really well-played too. Plus as a big personal bonus for me there is some awesome swearing going down, particularly on the track that references an alien ‘mutant with three tits’; it’s just like the Beatles’ ‘Let It Be’ without any of the sentiment, or piano and more thrash stoner metal about mutant boobies. Hurrah!
This is from the previous album, but I had to put it here because it just rocked my little world. Clearly some huge zaibatsu has pumped quintillions of dollars into this:
I’ve not played anything else since Friday, hell, why would I? Running Out Of Red is a brilliant primitive blast of an album. The Zig-Zags are clearly an enormous force for good and righteousness in our world and I can’t wait until they get to play next year as the half-time entertainment at Superbowl LI. Remember you read it here first.
667 Down (still)
PS: This was good too – the drummer’s T-shirt earns them 1537 bonus points: