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Zeke - Death Alley

  by Mark Rowland

published: 17 / 12 / 2001



Zeke - Death Alley
Label: Aces and Eights
Format: CD

intro

For most punks, the prospect of a band that lists " Maiden, Priest and Motorhead" as its main influences is far from enticing. It certainly gave me doubts about 'Death Alley', the latest album from Se


For most punks, the prospect of a band that lists " Maiden, Priest and Motorhead" as its main influences is far from enticing. It certainly gave me doubts about 'Death Alley', the latest album from Seattle punk veterans and regular contributors to Epitaph's 'Punk-O-Rama' compilations, Zeke. Zeke have been going strong since 1993, and lyrically have always had an element of '80s heavy metal, tending to write songs about Satan and fast cars while their hardcore peers took more political or emotional stances. A look at the tracklisting of 'Death Alley' doesn't help to remove the doubts in my mind, the majority of them being cheesy heavy metal clichés - 'Evil Woman', 'On the Run', and 'Eyes of Satan' being the worst of these. Still, I had the hope that Zeke had done this with their tongues firmly in their cheeks, so I gave 'Death Alley' a chance anyway. What I heard was quite surprising. On 'Death Alley', Zeke have taken the Epitaph skate-core blueprint and mixed it with elements of the stoner rock sound peddled by bands like Monster Magnet. The influence of stoner bands is most evident on slower tracks like the excellent 'Arkansas Man', and 'Evil Woman', but can be heard throughout the album, and singer Mark of the Beast's voice is a dead ringer for Monster Magnet's Dave Wyndorf. It's not perfect. Some of the songs sound a bit too similar to each other, but for the most part Zeke have pulled off their gamble and come across as genuinely original. Zeke have also added an enhanced section to 'Death Alley' that provides shortcuts to their website, as well as the site of label Aces and Eights, and the video for 'Death Alley' track 'Mountain Man'. Punk puritans should steer clear, but this should appeal to most punk and stoner rock fans.



Track Listing:-
1 Crossroads
2 Live Wire
3 Jack Torrance
4 Evil Dead
5 Arkansas Man
6 Shockwaves
7 Mountain Man
8 Evil Woman
9 The River
10 Night Rider
11 Into The Night
12 On The Run
13 Animal
14 Road Ahead
15 Eyes Of Satan
16 Death Alley



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