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Zevious - After the Air Raid
"The music of Zevious shrewdly juxtaposes order and its opposite: structural intensity pushed to its breaking point in the most appealing way. These boys are brilliant and fearless."–Vijay Iyer
"...Zevious is for anyone who loves aggressive, rock-oriented improv with grooves and some semblance of a song...these guys put their music degrees to work...letting us know that being intense doesnt mean you can't have arrangements and following a script doesnt mean you can't let your hair down." – DownBeat
Zevious are a unique electric jazz band for the modern era. This instrumental power trio are equally influenced by the sound of early John McLaughlin/Tony Williams Lifetime, Meshuggah, the 'downtown punk-jazz-harmolodic' school (James Blood Ulmer/Music Revelation Ensemble, Decoding Society, Curlew), Magma, Vijay Iyer and Ben Monder among others. This is NOT your father's jazz band. Zevious used to be a jazz guitar trio. Their 2007 self-titled debut CD featured a set of knotty jazz compositions and technical soloing that the group performed at jazz clubs. Very quickly thereafter, by the beginning of 2008, the band had broken away from the bonds of tradition and were developing a sound that had been developing and incubating since their first album. Mike ditched the jazz guitar for a Telecaster and DeBlase replaced his upright with an electric bass and they both picked up distortion pedals and cranked them up. Zevious began combining progressive rock grooves, tech metal, structured group improvisation, and complex song forms with a conventional jazz sound, creating a unique compositional style. Their new sound points towards a focused musical ground where it is apparent that this band can shred. Their songs now wind through peaks and valleys of odd-metered and hard-hitting bass and drum grooves with contrapuntal guitar interjections that morph into unison riffing, with hard-hitting, complex drum workouts and stop-on-a-dime style guitar breaks coupled with subtle, brooding segments. Their second album After the Air Raid is the culmination of nearly two years of hard compositional and rehearsal labor and is a record with lasting depth. Beautifully and clearly recorded by Colin Marston (of Behold...the Arctopus), the powerful live sound of the band is masterfully presented.
"Zevious is devious. It may look like your everyday electric jazz trio (guitar, bass, drums), but Zevious is anything but typical. Guitarist Mike Eber, bassist Johnny DeBlase, and drummer Jeff Eber give off the aroma of jazz-flavored metal, but their sophistication - odd-metered rhythms, unexpected harmonic ideas - slyly bubbles up. Their influences range wide: There’s a little bit of fusion forebears John McLaughlin and Tony Williams’s Lifetime in here, some electric free improv in the vein of Nels Cline and Last Exit, and nu-metal a la Rage Against the Machine. Compositionally and rhythmically, though, their next of kin are modern acoustic improvisers, folks like Vijay Iyer and Ken Vandermark. The interplay between the Eber cousins is central. The drummer states the beat and then finds a way to play around it, while the guitarist first plays the “right chords’’ and then harmonizes against them, often in ways that are deliberately unsettling. Even when they turn it down - as they do on the title tune, an eerie duet between guitar and bass - the music is both frightening and beautiful." -- boston.com
"In form, Zevious is a traditional power trio of electric guitar, bass and drums. But the group didn't start out this way in 2006, when it featured an acoustic jazz format. With the substitution of electric instrumentation and distortion pedals in 2008, its approach to music changed, but its grounding in group improvisation remained. After The Air Raid is a genre busting brawny recording that leans more towards technical metal than jazz. That said, the trio favor odd-metered grooves and a rocking beat. Guitarist Mike Eber, also a member of the bands Smother Party and Mea'l, wrote seven of the tracks, bassist Johnny DeBlaze the other four. The band juxtaposes quiet intensity against noisy distortion on "The Children And The Rats," culminating in a silent stoppage. Zevious favors the thunderous bassline over a swing one, but retains the skill of a jazz band. Its quiet/loud approach makes for a winning sound." – All About Jazz
You can hear a track off of the album here
JAZZ POWER TRIO--outstanding drummer really holds things together. Bass was up front and then trailing is the lead guitar? Jazz jazz jazz jizz. Loved AFTER THE AIR RAID. very nice toy web page. let's the viewer control some of my favorite film footage: Hiroshima and Hydrogen tests.
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