ZEROZONIC – Aftersane
Guitarist Daniel Olaissen may be known to most in the metal community for his work in Satyricon as a live guitarist from 1996-1999 and playing with the Norwegian death metal outfit BloodRedThrone. By 2004 he set his sights on establishing his own band in more of a groove-oriented thrash manner, so Zerozonic started and they’ve released two albums previous to the latest "Aftersane". Filled out as a quartet with vocalist Arvid Tjelta, drummer Jon Erik Bokn, and bassist Martin Berger, the 11 songs on "Aftersane" possess a lethal riff charge and fierceness, without forsaking any of the standard metal tonality and flashes of stellar technique.
Songs like "Party Pandemonium" and the title track appear more standardized with the stop/ start staccato shuffle and semi-tribal groove drum patterns, while the slower churning arrangement "True Saviour" and faster "Something to Be" give the listeners a look into the early Machine Head days- with Daniel throwing down some fantastic, tasteful lead work. Arvid’s natural vocal employment is one of a semi-acidic screaming variety, with sparse use of clean melodies- almost in that Max/ Sepultura mode with a touch of the current modern metal bad cop adrenaline rush for emphasis.
No expense spared in terms of the professional artwork, CD booklet, and production values, Zerozonic are seeking a label deal with this third release- and I foresee some astute label willingly picking this up. Daniel knows how to key in on all the right audience interactive moments with the right riff changes, half time tempo moves, and sprinkle in his obvious extreme metal resume – coming up with a high caliber groove thrash effort. The Prong-oriented "Give It Up" and 6:22 melodic closer "Rise Again" will keep this in consistent rotation for me.