The Zeros are an American Punk-Rock group formed in 1976 in California. The band was originally formed with Javier Escovedo (vocals/guitar) brother of The Dragons Mario, Robert Lopez (guitar), Héctor Penalothey (bass) and Baba Chenelle (drums). Often referred to as “the Mexican Ramones,” Right at the front of the queue when punk rock broke in the ’70s They released their first single on Bomp! for those cool kids who know . Alongside the likes of Black Flag, Circle Jerks or Germs The Zeros were more underground and probably didn’t get the headlines the others got. The band called it a day in 1981, but reformed sporadically for live shows, and recorded an album in 1999 “Right Now!”. There are a few sporadic releases like the live album and a few Bomp compilations but this is now the go to Zeros record.

The album “Right Now!” Hit the street on October 12, 1999. The band’s influences were firmly planted in proto-punk and garage rock. THE ZEROS make it evident on this album, by covering the New York Dolls ‘Chatterbox’ (which they do rather well it must be said). But the originals paint a much better picture of just how good the band is from the opening and title track ‘Right Now’ they’re students of mr Thunders in particular and are happy to write gritty rock n roll songs with a melody. With a tonne of energy and a great ragged Rock n Roll sound that for sure leans on The Dolls and the Stones as well its gritty street Rock n Roll check out ‘Do The Swim’ its got a 60s beat and melody but a tougher street sound.

There are also slower and melodic dirty Pop songs to satisfy all tastes. Remember when playing this album in the 70s when they were teenagers. By recording this album more than 20 years later, they have better control over their instruments and have gained experience and the beauty of hindsight. There are a lot of songs and music to get through here with eighteen songs to get through it is an excellent album.

‘Rico Amour’ sails close to The Ramones with the melody more than the tempo or sound. ‘Girl On The Block’ has a laid-back acoustic guitar strum that helps with the change of focus being a bit dreamy with lush backing vocals but ultimately it’s still rock n Roll baby. Twelve Bar punk rockin boogie also has songs like ‘Sneakin Out’ drawing those parallels to Da Bruddas but where they really hit their stride is songs like ‘Talkin’ pure rock n Roll with plenty of sneering and snot and the closing track that reminds me of the most excellent Gunfire Dance just pure sleazy punk rock n roll from the heart with soul. For those who don’t know THE ZEROS, this is an excellent introductory album. How different would it be if more bands revisited their songs so many years later. Nice move guys and a really nice album. Buy it!

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Author: Dom Daley