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Zippo - Ode to Maximum

Ode to Maximum
by Eric Tinmouth-Poulin at 01 December 2018, 1:47 AM

ZIPPO is a stoner/psych rock that originated back in 2004, based out of Italy and originally this album was released in 2005 and now faithfully remastered for vinyl and reissued in 2018. The album is entitled “Ode To Maximum”. The first song on the album sets the tone for what is to come, “Alpha” as it is called, with its very 1980's horror/thriller approach and guitar effects. It is essentially a short intro that carries into the next track “Tsunami Dust” which has some very heavy distortion, it low in tone and very dense; something akin to SLEEP or NEUROSIS. It relies on heavy density and something I was not used to, clean vocals that almost sound like a softer Phil Anselmo at times and Mike Patton in other moments. The song is unique and very unsettling at a first listen but it catches your attention at every note.

S.n.a.p.r.s.t.” is completely different as it sounds like a cross between BLACK SABBATH and SPIRAL ARCHITECT, it is controlled chaos with a groove and an added progressive and psychedelic undertone. Again, this is the type of song that grows on you, it has energy, despair and a lot of complexity. We even get a touch of jazz in here that I sincerely did not expect whatsoever. “Forgotten Season” sounds like it was meant to be recorded in a desert and just comes off a tribute to probably the most well-known band in the stoner rock scene, KYUSS. It plays off the style nicely with a lot of echo effects and pounding bass.

Night Jam” is much more psychedelic in nature, a more traditional THE DOORS style to it I would say. Almost hallucinogenic in its delivery and effect, it is a completely different change of pace on the album. “Crazy Forest” I find is one of the most original songs on the album as it takes its essence from progressive rock. One could argue that the strongest country to originate the genre in the 70's, besides the UK, was Italy. The song has a repetitive pattern that seems to drill in a hole in your brain, the best example I could give is KING CRIMSON who really had a knack to tease your auricular sense with odd notes and time signatures, often repeated for minutes to allow the listener to dive into their musical kingdom.

Another key song here is “The Elephant March” which apparently is one of their most well-known tracks. It has an alternative flavor to it in the distortion sound, a bit of SONIC YOUTH in there I would say. It a slow number but has one of the stronger choruses the album possesses and I guarantee you, out of all the songs here, this one will stick to your brain for a while. Overall, this album has a ton of influences and uses a bit of everything from rock, stoner, psychedelic rock, metal, progressive rock. The album is unique and very difficult to file into one category as it goes all over the place yet still keeps a slow pace akin to the stoner genre. If you have never listened to this album and enjoy music that challenges you both spiritually and musically, look no further than this album.

Songwriting: 8
Originality: 8
Memorability: 8
Production: 8

4 Star Rating

1. Alpha
2. Tsunami Dust
3. S.n.a.p.r.s.t.
4. Forgotten Season
5. Night Jam
6. Kid In The Desert
7. Crazy Forest
8. Tukay's Fury
9. The Elephant March
10. Omega
11. Night Jam 2
12. July
Davide Straccione - Vocals, Keyboard
Silvio Spina – Guitars
Alessandro Sergente - Guitars
Tonino Bosco – Bass
Federico Sergente - Drums
Record Label: Spikerot Records


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Edited 26 May 2019

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