Do you like riffs? Big, meaty, nasty, sludgy, riffs? Riffs that make you want to punch holes in random walls and possibly even faces? Then Italy’s Zolle might become one of your new favorite bands very quickly.
Zolle are a two-piece outfit from the backwoods of Italy. (Who knew Italy had “backwoods” and “rednecks”?!? At least this is what their bio states…) For it being only two dudes, Zolle know how to make the most of what they’ve got to create a boisterous and discordant racket. At the center of their sound is the guitar of Marcello Lan who clearly had visions of volcanoes, herds of rhinos, and everything else that makes the Earth shake and rumble when penning these riffs. Hovering around him the whole time is the drumming of Stefano, who circles around those riffs like a celestial body waiting so patiently to crash and explode into something, anything, that comes into his orbit. (Oh, and for the hell of it throw in the random xylophone solo as well.) The metal scene has a growing list of two-pieces who can cull together their talents to create something exceptional without the need of sharing a stage or studio with anyone else. Zolle are going to quickly move to the forefront of that group based on the strength of this, their self-titled, debut album.
An interesting twist though to this two-piece is that they’ve decided to ride sans-vocals, instead letting the guitar and drums tell all the story they need. Lacking a vocalists seems to put an extra emphasis on the music itself and makes simple classification difficult. When trying to pin where this band would lie on the metal spectrum you come up with the obvious doom/sludge/stoner rock references. However, opening tack “Trakthor” for example sounds like something off an early Entombed record and would fit perfectly with someone like L.G. Petrov growling over top of it. There are moments like on the closer “Moongitruce” where they get a little spacey and expand the sound to a more atmospheric realm. Regardless of what you want to label it though this album is a hell of a ride and one that should be taken multiple times in a short time frame for maximum riffage exposure. Their album officially hits the streets next week but you can check out an exclusive track over at Invisible Oranges.
Speaking of doom metal, when we talk about influential bands there is one in particular that I’m stymied as to why more people don’t mention them. I honestly believe that, at least in doom circles, one of the most criminally underrated bands of all-time is California’s Mindrot. I highly recommend you (re)visit their debut full-length album, Dawning, which Relapse put out back in 1995.