Zero Zero: a sadly unlamented 1990s anthology comic series published by Fantagraphics, which published some of the most batshit underground cartoonists of the time, as well as some of the smartest satirists and grossest gross-out artists. It was briefly incredible; it stopped before it ran out of steam; it was punk as fuck.
Zero Zeroes: just one of those ungoogleable band names, scuppered a tad by the existence of Californian ‘70s punkas The Zeroes. But this German band are definitely their own beast - OK, there are touches of San Diego legend John Reis in their DNA (the garage-centric power chords are pure Rocket From The Crypt; the relentless drive of the guitars calls to mind the wild focus of Hot Snakes), but they’re here to make a racket their own way, and it’s scintillating.
So why mention the comic? Well, aside from the similarity in the names, there’s something about this gleefully menacing racket that just feels like it draws from the same well; equal parts smart, serious, cartoonish, and drawn to a devilish sense of reckless abandon that you’ll only find if you really know where to look for it. Whether making fist-clenching punk anthems from unsolved murder cases (as they do on the rollicking ‘Tamam Shud’) or simply slapping you in the face with killer riffage and even better tunes (‘Mouth Full Of Snakes’, ‘Dark Thoughts’... actually pretty much every cut here), they’re here to make you surrender to that sweet sweet rock’n’roll. Not to labour the point about what a crappy year 2020’s been, but thanks to… well, you-know-what, I think we could all do with a bit of that in our lives right now, huh?
TL;DR - Zero Zeroes represent the most fun you can have with a punk rock record, especially at a time when a moshpit feels like a fanciful dream. FFO Hex Dispensers, New Bomb Turks, early Riverboat Gamblers, getting your entire face ripped off after catching it on barbed wire and just thinking ‘ah, fuck it’ before pogoing straight to the nearest whisky bar. Yeah, THAT much fun. Get involved.
200 Black/ 100 Blue. Split release with those Austrian sweethearts 'Bachelor Records'.
200 Black/ 100 Blue