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Human Zoo: My Own God

Returning with their fourth album in ten years, Germany's Human Zoo offer up My Own God. Leaning, not too surprisingly given their location, on a Pink Cream 69, Gotthard, Shakra, Mad Max sound, this is upbeat good time stuff. And yet with an, in places, slightly heavier attack and full time saxophonist in Boris Matakovic, this band's slick choruses and biting riffs are at least given their own sense of individual character. Singer Thomas Seeburger has a similar rasp to that of Michael Voss, his biting edge adding a real sense of urgency to a strong set of melodic rock songs.

Often saxophone can be a love it or loathe it sound, but Human Zoo use it wisely, a few song introductions here, the occasion solo there, while the likes of "Cry Baby Cry" benefits from Matakovic taking on the little lead lines you'd expect guitarist Ingolf Engler to handle. Yet if anything, that the guitarist doesn't have to continually unleash his full and impressive bag of six string tricks, makes his contributions all the stronger. Add in a rock solid rhythm section in the shape of Ralf Grespan and drummer Kevin Klimesch and the likes of "A Day To Remember" becomes a slower hit of real substance, while "'NSA" slams hard with an almost Rammstein pound and pummel. That said, it's possibly the latter track's big bold keyboards from Zarko Mestrovic which really makes this cut the aggressively accessible success it is.

With "Like A Bitch" expertly melding brute force and melody, "4U" adding a more playful, carefree vibe and "Solitaire" a striding strut of confidence, there really isn't an aspect of the mid-European melodic rock template that Human Zoo haven't got covered. Making it all the more impressive that it's actually the opening duo of "One Direction" and "Cry Baby Cry" that show this band at their best – the former an anthemic call to arms, the latter a commercial slice of sax led hooks.

There's no doubt that the Human Zoo sound is one you've heard many times before and yet with the willingness to explore different attacks and approaches, and of course, the liberal use of saxophone, with My Own God, they're not simply following in others' footsteps. That in itself must make them worth checking out.

Track Listing
1. One Direction  
2. Cry Baby Cry  
3. Love Train  
4. A Day To Remember  
5. My Own Illusion  
6. NSA  
7. Like a Bitch
8. 4U  
9. Solitaire
10. Wave Your Flag
11. Reminds Me of You  

Added: January 1st 2017
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Human Zoo online
Hits: 1654
Language: english

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