Friday February 23rd 2018

Zero Rights – “Our World”


Zero Rights – “Our World”


Refuse Resist were one of the top hardcore bands when we started TNB five years ago. We were made quite clear of this by others and when we experienced them live, we found out we were not misled.

That band ceased to exist when Shawn, their lead singer, moved to New York to be with his sweetie Lyz Red. A move that seems wise as Lyz is a such a sweetheart and they are now engaged.

I’d like to point out, though Refuse Resist doesn’t exist anymore, they have done a couple of reunion shows And the one I caught, earlier this year, that was part of the Keith Brooks tribute shows- was probably the best set I’ve seen by anyone this year.

And a big reason for that has to do with Shawn and this is his new project- Zero Rights.

Yes, this is still top notch hardcore with a growly, intense, loud vocals that grabs you by the throat while the singer’s throat seems ready to explode or detonate.

Socially conscious lyrics, a rhythm section that kicks ass and a guitar that slices and dices with angry, distortion laced surf riffs would appear to be the recipe of Zero Rights.

Shall we have a taste? I’m gonna cut you an extra big slice.

“Our World” erupts with  an immediacy like a car crash but instead of chrome and steel it’s sound and rhythm coming at your full force with the power of a nuclear warhead. The vocals are in your face, the beat throttles you unmercifully while the background vocals yell demandingly for “Our World.” And the world within this song is superb.

“Shutdown” is taken at a more energetically moderate pace but the rhythm guitar is spiraling on overdrive while the vocals emphatically tear the top of your head apart. “This is our country/ This is our life.” And this is a song that plows so passionately and adroitly along that you want it to never end.

“Zero Rights” starts with some trebly bass and some chiming guitars and a bellowing vocal that beckons, “Let’s Go,” that then turns into a Jello Biafra like diatribe. “Living in a fallacy on a soapbox where we have no say.” This song may be about how the left and the right are now just realizing that they have no say in our supposedly, democratic way. This song pushes and pulls and in the end, pulverizes. I guess this would be their theme song, good choice as it’s one of the best on the album.

With a powerful drum roll that seems unwilling ever to end but eventually turns into “Fund A Mental.” Continues with Shawn’s powerful vocals and the guitarists blinding surf licks- and this song kicks mighty ass. At the end the bass leads us into an intense, wonderful coda. Another rousing anthem that incites and disintegrates all in its quake.

“Last Difference” explodes with a riff that sounds like it would be right at home on an old X album along with vocals that recall heavy, hardcore. “You’re trying to get away with murder/ It should be suicide.” This song rides roughshod over your eardrums with a second part that starts to rock out like Bachman Turner Overdrive at their best. But soon we slip back into the killer beginning, of my favorite song on the album, as it goes out in a blaze of glory.

Zero Rights says they are “for fans of Black Flag, Dead Kennedys and Kill Your Idols”- which is spot on-

I’d like to add they are for people who want awesome current traditional hardcore which is kind of rare these days, as most new bands I hear are either traditional punk or hardcore with a definite metal influence.

And thought this band is from New York, I hear little of that heavy, hardcore influence but more-so an earlier hardcore style, still politically aware in lyrics but less overtly metal in music style.

“Well, how astute of you Slimedog, I hear you say, “You seem to have dissected it perfectly.”

Well, not really…because I’ve failed to mention the excitement, the barrel loads of guts and energy that thrive on this album. The fun and anger and passion that rips past your ears and hits you in your heart, where it counts most and in your mind, where it bears meaning.

But now I hope I have.


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