Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Green Leafs of Kentucky...

Full Zenith - Full Zenith (2013)


Some state-side stoner thrash has found its way to my ears this week! It's been quite the stretch of European ass-kicking doom for a while (don't worry, I still love that, too), but it feels good to review some fellow Midwestern 'Muricans who know how to lay it down. Hailing from the heartland of Louisville, Kentucky, Full Zenith have taken their love of metal and the sweet leaf and rolled it into an effort that reeks of earsplitting power and noisy vocals.
What is quickly realized on the band's four-track, self-titled EP is that they have a flair for the fast and the loud, in contrast to the often more down-tempoed and "epic" sound of more traditional stoner acts. What results is a highly spastic burst of barbarous drums and punishing riffs that channel even darker groups like Cursed and All Pigs Must Die. This, of course, is not too surprising given the fact that other diverse and unique (and successful) sounds have escaped Louisville in more recent years (i.e., Coliseum and Young Widows). Not to draw too large of a comparison between Full Zenith and their hometown associates, the band still offers up a healthy dose of something new on their album. Upon multiple listens, I found that each track possesses a good mixture of melody and backing vocals that are sometimes overshadowed by the album's production. Honestly the only real flaw in the record being vocals that may have received the proverbial cart-before-the-horse treatment, this is an easily fixed and often seen hiccup in demos that should only improve as the band continues to develop its sound.
Hopefully with a little more exposure and the right gigs, Full Zenith could truly find a home amongst today's grassroots stoner metal scene and give it a little jolt of life. However, when it's all said and done, I'm sure Full Zenith will have just the right blend to once again lighten the mood.
~Joe

For Fans Of; Integrity, Cursed, Weekend Nachos, Weedeater