Your Gateway to Music and More from a Christian Perspective
Slow down as you approach the gate, and have your change ready....
The first thing that grabs you about the new Zao disc, other than the huge eye on the front, is the Latin title. Now take a look at the back; the disc is divided into five movements. Has Zao gone all epic on us, a la Saviour Machine? No, although their newest album has take a decided turn for the darker, compared to their earlier work.
Where Zao’s first Solid State disc, The Splinter Shards the Birth of Separation, was in many respects a hardcore praise and worship disc, Liberate Te Ex Inferis deals with something of a more earthy nature--the ongoing struggle of man facing a seemingly hopeless world.
The five movement titles, it is explained in the cover booklet, come from Dante’s Inferno, representing his five principal rings of Hell. There are two tracks per movement, with the first and last tracks of the album being either completely or mostly instrumental.
Musically, Zao is one of the few non-hybrids around. This is straight-up hardcore: furiously-paced drums replete with cymbal crashes, heavily distorted guitars, anguished vocals. When this comes bursting forth after an acoustic intro (45 seconds into track 4, “If These Scars Could Speak”), it has the power to surprise, something few bands in a crowded scene do.
Lyrically, the album seems to be one 40+-minute impassioned scream for help, with such catching lyrics as:
Someone tell us we are lovedand:
This world encased in flames...It seems that Zao’s many member changes, and their new lyricist, have combined to bring a much darker edge to this band; While the album screams for help, nowhere is the Helper even really hinted at, except in the band’s “thank you”s.
Sonically and artistically, this is a well-made disc; the vocals are as intelligible as any you’ll hear in the genre, while the cover is well laid out and easy to read.
Overall, this is a fine disc
for most hardcore listeners. If you want your music directly praising God,
this isn’t the disc for that; but if you’d just like to scream at the world
for a bit, this album can help you do it.
Josh Marihugh 3/14/2000
The latest album that Zao
has stirred up is a thick and hearty feast for all of you who love Deathcore.
The concept behind this album is awesome and quite original. It digs deep
into some of the ideas from Dante's Inferno. There are ten songs
in five groups; the five groups represent the five circles of hell. These
songs are dark and stay right with the theme, while the lyrics are descriptive
and foreboding adding to the sense of helplessness and pain.