Music Reviews



Welcome Back, Zoobombs!

Emperor Norton

If Jon Spencer is the Empire State Building, this is downtown Tokyo. The Zoobombs turn the key and the engine kicks over in a roar of blue smoke as the opening theme for “Highway A Go Go” starts. With a precision demolition team as a rhythm section, an organ so wild and wobbly you fear for the children, and frontman Don Matsuo’s nuclear guitar spillage, this is bigger, faster, better, and louder than just about anything else out there. “Jumbo” features a groove so weird, I feel like I’m sitting on a sweaty swampy porch at the base of Mt. Fuji. Did I mention the Zoobombs are Japanese? Can’t understand a single word they say, but man they rawk.

This is fresh, new and vital. It’s the sonic equivalent of walking into a hypercooled Wal-Mart after an hour stuck in traffic with no A/C available. “Flat-Top” has a menacing disco beat that is spiced up by intervals of sheer tribal chaos. “Midnight ‘69” has got to be about a car, because it’s got that boogie thing down so pat that smoke pours out of my stereo. Welcome Back, Zoobombs! bellows from start to finish. Do not purchase if you can’t play it loud. Emperor Norton Records, 102 Robinson St., Los Angeles, CA 90026;

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