Album Reviews
Band: ZVP

Title: Mothership

Label: Independent Release


Well, if you're going to be remembered for some fantastic work within the music business, there's nowt like going out with a bang, and that is exactly what David Zychek has done here with 'Mothership', the collection of songs by ZVP.  A band that also includes Phil Vincent and David Prater, who were helped out by Vince O' Regan to add the lead guitars when the time came, as sadly David passed away before he had the chance.  I used the term 'going out with a bang' purposely as this is exactly what these songs do ... well, more EXPLODE to tell you the truth, and as there seems to be a mix of styles within the album, so we all get a bit of what we fancy!


'Down' meanders into life as a 'ballad' of sorts, each instrument coming across as laid back as they can be played without being horizontal.  Phil's vocals as nonchalant as they come before the souped up chorus kicks in to shake up any listener out of their relaxed state, the hard riff and pounding drum beat giving off clues as what is to come later, and the opposite of laid back raises it's rockin' head as 'The Way It's Got To Be' steamrollers it's way in on the brain-drilling Metallica-esqued angry riffage and snappy drumming combo.  Not changing their route for one second, just plain old 'heads down and go for it' attitude, the vocals this time could chew the nads off a gnat they're that visceral at times!  


ZVP lean towards Alice In Chains territory on the slow, sludgy Grundge-alike throbber 'Ballad Of Sorrow' and I mean throbber, as the bassline here does exactly that,  to the point that you'll have to use Gorilla glue on your speakers to keep them from moving due to the pulsating vibration that is given off.  This actually continues on into the rhythmic, groove-tastic, modern rockin' 'Stone Cold Killer', which is swathed in harmonies, fantastic finger-poppin' fretwork and the type of vocals that say 'yeah, I got this'!  If a good Van Halen were to mix it up with a good Extreme, this is more likely the outcome, and I.S.Y.N. ... you will not be able to keep your feet still to this 'un!


Gotta say, when it came to 'In The Name Of Hate', I was scratching my bald head and wondering 'do I like this one or not?', as it's ... well, the guitar work is great, rhythm section once more spot on, but I felt it's a little all over the place for my liking in all honesty.  But hey, this is the sign of a 'band' trying something out of the ordinary maybes for themselves, pushing themselves to try and see what they're capable of out of their comfort zone.  If it doesn't connect with some, it will with others, say within the Thrash sector, as the uber heavy vibe given off will tickle their fancy somewhat, as will 'Wall Of Confusion', not as thrashy, but with the tonnage that is given off riff-wise here, along with a drum pattern that is almost hallucinogenic throughout, as are the vocals, fans of the likes of Audioslave and Tremonti will have a field day as they sway in unison to this monster of a song! 


Who mentioned Velvet Revolver?! Taking turn on vocals, David Zychek lets rip on the rollicking 'Afterlife', a great, swaggering, off-kilter gem that said band were masters of in their short, but brilliant lifespan, and with the hip-thrusting manner in which the lads put over here musically, again with more groove than Motown.  The mind-bending harmonies in tandem, but especially on the petulant but cool as f*ck vocals, make this the stand-out track on the album. 


'Spotlight' chugs away on a seismic slab of power riffage and that rhythm section that could cause a landslide if played out in the open, it's head-nodding tempo doing exactly what it says on the tin as it growls it's way along again with that 'heads down and go for it' mentality that one Prince Of Darkness would give his right arm for, and does it Hell give up 'til the end?  NO WAY JOSE, this is one head-pounder that couldn't be reproduced on an album ... or could it?!!  Guess again, dear reader, 'cos along comes 'Time Is Running Out' to grab you by the cahoonas and help finish the job off, maybes not as head-crushing in terms of ferocity, but the 'going Hell for leather' attitude stays, causing almost meltdown on the instruments, especially when the soaring solo kicks in amid the flaying drumming and grinding six-string action.  Phil slipping into the groove, sounding like a man possessed in parts, so if the Rockiest of Rockers ain't impressed with this, then I'm going to befriend Donald Trump on Twitter ... and I'd rather listen to Taylor Swift 24/7 in real life than that!  Thinking of present day stuff, just keep playing the last two song there, as it'll frighten the Bejeezus out of Covid 19 and make it wave a white flag in surrender. Hah, vaccine, my arse, these two will do the job!! 


'Mothership' is one of those albums that make you think 'what the Hell just happened there?' as your brain cells have just had the rudest and rockiest of awakenings from this mundane, p*ssed-off life we've all come to expect since mid-March.  If there was ever a fitting way to remember David Zychek, then this album that was to be his final piece of work is exactly that, and well done to Phil, David and Vince for completing the work that must've been hard to do at times.  Let's raise a glass ...


 Review by: Robb Baldwin



1.  Down
2.  The Way It's Got To Be
3.  Ballad of Sorrow
4.  Stone Cold Killer
5.  In The Name Of Hate
6.  Wall Of Confusion
7.  Afterlife
8.  Spotlight
9.  Time Is Running Out


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