Described as the missing link between Kyuss and Ministry, Zombie Motors Wrecking Yard most certainly are a headfuck. Listening to this, their debut album, is like the musical equivalent of someone acting out the plot of Mad Max Fury Road while speeding out of their head. It’s raw, dirty, and grooves like a motherfucker. Throw in some comparisons to Jim Morrison at his whacked out best, and you’re nearly there. Only, it’s Jim Morrison acting in some gonzo b-movie, as Hunter S Thompson tells him to slow down.
At the same time, it’s an album of contrasts as Zombie Motors Wrecking Yard mix it up a fair bit. As well as echoing Ministry, the album also spits out some shades of punk, especially on ‘Love For Speed’, where vocalist Ran refuses to hold back. It could easily be from the golden days of The Sex Pistols and The Damned… apart from the guitar solos though. Punks couldn’t play for shit, that was the appeal. Zombie Motors Wrecking Yard can play, that’s the difference, as highlighted by the exquisite playing on ‘Roll N Burn’. Changing tack from the all-out thrust of ‘Grind The Grinder’ and ‘Dead Smile’, it’s an altogether different feel, as Ran and the boys conjure up the spirit of Jim Morrison. With bluesy guitar, and an incredible rootsy feel, it’s a joyous four minutes, and perhaps the standout track on the album. ‘Fight Fight Fight’ brings back the punk, as Zombie Motors Wrecking Yard go into ‘Oi Oi Oi’ mode. Mid song, it takes a turn to the left, as the band slow it down and veer off into stoner territory. The fuzz on the guitars is massive, and serves as a nice interlude before they scream back into the song. The title track is back on stoner duty, but different from what you might expect from a stoner band. Stoner/desert rock can be a touch formulaic, but it’s the vocals from Ran that make the song stand out. Raspy as hell, the guy bleeds for his art, that’s for sure.
The blues resurface with ‘Bad Boy Benny’, which is something that I could imagine Bon Scott singing in some Aussie backwater hell hole. This is the only time that I’ll compare Zombie Motors Wrecking Yard to their fellow Aussies. It has the same swagger as early ‘DC, but without actually trying to sound like them. An album of many colours, from punk and stoner, to bluesy rock, by way of the glam rock drum sound in ‘Galactic Motherfucker’. For fans of Clutch, Kyuss, Ministry, The Doors, and (ahem) The Glitter Band.
Review: Dave Stott