Some bands and artists just click with ears and imagination from their introduction and for us one was definitely UK trio Zedi Forder. Maybe it is more accurate to say the creative force behind the band crafted the connection because previous adventures for the duo of vocalist/drummer/primary songwriter Chris Kerley and guitarist Mark Carstairs have equally seriously enticed and stoked the passions. They are also the creators of Tricore, An Entire Legion, and Rind Skank; all distinctly individual bands releasing some of the most exciting and imaginative adventures in recent years though each being sadly missed or ignored by a tide of major attention. Zedi Forder is their latest project, with bassist Richard Tomsett alongside, creating a bold and multi-flavoured mix of alternative metal and voracious rock ‘n’ roll which fuels a self-titled debut album that quite simply deserves greed driven recognition.
In some ways because of previous seductions of our passions, Zedi Forder get a head start in a want, or should that be need, to hear its exploits and an assumption of having some level of appetite for what may be on offer. Equally though, it makes expectations much more demanding and triggers the question of can the band create something unique and fresh enough to be truly new from past endeavours as much as those around them. Many bands or musicians struggle in one guise but across a few it is a rare success. The release of an also self-titled EP in 2015 suggested the Woking hailing outfit could and would, their first album now a striking confirmation going well beyond simply bearing out that proposal though understandably it also gives delicious slithers teasing at earlier explorations which adds to rather than defuses the originality.
The Zedi Forder bio says it is a band with a split personality. “One side is driven by the musical aim of being bold and ever hopeful. The other side is fearless and judgmental, with music that reflects this.” The album certainly reflects this suggestion, its songs, sometimes within themselves, twisting from creatively free-swinging and swashbuckling to imaginatively mischievous on to proposals forceful and emotionally edgy and cutting but all crafted with an instinct for rousing sounds, manipulative rhythms, and daring diversity.
The album opens up with Killakarta and instantly consumes ears with rapacious riffs and jabbing beats as a bass growl courts a thick wiry groove. Kerley’s distinctive and ever magnetic vocals are soon in the heart of the mix, steering the song’s muscular stroll with expression and flair. That initial groove, carrying a growl far more vocal in the bass of Tomsett, winds around the imagination; it trespass enjoyably toxic and addictively refreshing. A slip into a mellow climate is just as tempting, accentuating the song’s unpredictability before being overwhelmed by a more primal expulsion of sound and intensity, reclaiming its moment as a great jazzy lilt infests the bass.
Seductive and predatory in equal measure, the track is a glorious start to an emprise of imagination and craft backed by the arguably less mercurial Machines though it is no slouch in raising its temperature and dynamics across a persistently eventful body. Kerley’s beats bite as Carstairs’ melodies spin a web of suggestion; his trap of enterprise further ignited by possibly the most virulent and catchy hook lined groove you will hear this year.
Dark Mook is a kaleidoscope of sound and texture, its opening noisy glaze slipping into a funky pop tinged stroll of melody and harmony before grungier flames escape guitars and bass as Kerley consistently croons with his never wavering melodic dexterity before I’m the one offers its own individual tempting for an already aroused and on the brink of lustful appetite. The fourth track also opens with a bracing surge of raw sound but is soon entangling the listener in a flirtatiously earthy bassline with funk in its genes and as quickly catchy vocals and beats with a sense of devilry in their gait. Carstairs’ weave of melodic teasing is a riveting net to get caught up in, ensnaring the senses before things get dirty and feisty though Kerley is still keeping the instinctive catchiness flowing in touch as the track to re-establishes its unbridled virulence. The song is another early pinnacle; an irresistible treat with a great 12 Stone Toddler meets KingBathmat scent to its revelry.
Darker shadows wrap the melodic beauty and volatile turbulence of next up My Moon, the song drawing on electronic tenacity to colour its variable and perpetually alluring atmosphere above a rugged terrain of invention. Across its roar, thoughts pluck at comparisons to the likes of Sick Puppies, Voyager, and Soundgarden; all slightly inaccurate but potent hints to the great track.
The grin loaded Nachoman comes next, the song a compelling tongue in cheek but earnest tease of social commentary. It has voice and hips hooked within its opening Red Hot Chili Peppers smoked swerve and only proceeds to tighten its vice like grip through heavier spices and inventive condiments of sound while Open Wide grabs attention with a bullish tirade of sound before flirtatiously dancing in ears with its Jane’s Addiction like funk metal meets System Of A Down seeded versatility. Melodies and emotions fluctuate in character and intensity across the song, as too vocals and rhythms with the latter an evolving torrent of enticement and aggression.
They love it more is a cyclone of sound and energy within an oasis of reflection and melody, never truly settling but always in control of its volcanic fusion of rock and metal while successor Smooch is a predator of hips and imagination with its boisterous shuffle courted by barbarous rhythms and emerging sonic hostility again spurned on by the spiky beats of Kerley and the irritable tone of Tomsett’s bass. With an infection loaded and at times psychotic groove sharing lures with an inherent catchiness, the track as its predecessor hits the spot dead centre, burrowing deeper with every listen, as quite simply does the album.
The growling Time after time leaves no stone of temptation unturned, its grunge/metal snarl maybe the most creatively untwisted track on the release but as bold and naturally infectious as any others such as the following On the run, a slab of classic metal and heavy rock with a nod to the likes of Zeppelin and Sabbath in its heart infused with the progressive and melody conjuring imagination of Zedi Forder.
Though not the actual final song, Lonely One closes things off with its melodically haunting, sonically searing, and rhythmically imposing blaze which alone shares all you need to know to hear why its creators warrant unbridled attention.
With a bonus quartet of mesmeric acoustic tracks which alone prove why we rate Kerley as a vocalist so much, each also unveiling a new drama and shade to the original’s aspects, the album is manna for body and soul and a real bargain as it seems it is being released as a name your own price download. Covering their first EP we said “it would be rude not to go off and discover its majesty “, for the album substitute ‘rude’ for ‘stupid’ because you will surely not hear anything more gripping and exciting than what Zedi Forder have in lying wait.
The Zedi Forder album is released June 10th wit pre-ordering available now @ https://tricore.bandcamp.com/album/zedi-forder-the-album-out-10th-june-pre-order-to-get-4-tracks-entire-flame-wiz-album-now
Pete RingMaster 02/06/2017
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