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Forum » Albumes » Novedades Internacionales » ZEBRA - 3.V [Japan remaster SHM-CD] (2013)
ZEBRA - 3.V [Japan remaster SHM-CD] (2013)
ojotigreFecha: Lunes, 2013-10-21, 11:37 AM | Mensaje # 1
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ZEBRA - 3.V [Japan remaster SHM-CD] (2013)

As noted on the previous post, all-4 first Zebra albums just has been issued in Japan on a high quality SHM-CD format by a specialized label,
remastered in conjunction with Zebra's mastermind Randy Jackson.
Now we have ZEBRA 3.V (pronounced “three point five”) originally
released in 1986, a criminally ignored gem and in my opinion, the band's
finest album.

By 1986, the Zebra was facing pressure from Atlantic Records to produce a
hit album. The self-titled debut went Gold certified, but follower No
Tellin’ Lies had weaker sales and a luke-warm reception. For their third
release, the band made a concerted effort to create a more
widely-accepted commercial album and to this end, Zebra succeeded.
ZEBRA 3.V is wonderful Melodic Rock - at times AOR - recording, as said,
criminally ignored fundamentally by the fans of the genre itself, which
is a shame.
The album is rarely mentioned in any favorite list, but the fact is that
few Melodic Rock aficionados (old and new) simply never have listened

There were many reasons for this to happen: by the time 3.V was put on
sale, the record company had all but pulled support for the project,
dooming it to obscurity despite the fact that includes some of the
band’s finest work.
Another point (although now may look irrelevant) was the confusing
title, using mixed media to resolve a nonsensical phrase: '3.V but read
three point five'. In the mid-eighties you needed a high-impact title,
instantly recognizable and a more 'glammy' front cover to seduce.
Anyway, always the important thing is the good music, and 3.V packs a lot inside.

3.V was produced for the first time by the band (in fact Randy Jackson)
and the most songs are strongly keyboard-infused by Felix Hanemann's
synths, with catchy melodies and the radio oriented choruses that ruled
the 1985-86 period in the genre.
You have kicking rockers with a full-fledged, super processed '80s sound
such as "Can’t Live Without", the AOR bliss of "He’s Making You The
Fool" and "You'll Never Know" or the melodic rock bounce of "You're Only
Losing Your Heart"
And of course, there's the highlight "Hard Living Without You" mixing
the best of both worlds with a stupendous musicality, a song that should
be considered a Melodic Rock / AOR classic by now.

However, Zebra never would be the 'typical' band in the genre, always
aiming to offer the listener more substance; "Time" is a pleasant
12-string acoustic affair with a little progressive scent, perhaps the
best piece the band has ever recorded. Even with a heavier chorus, the
song maintains a melancholy mood throughout and it contains a brilliant
ending addendum section which really brings the whole track home.
Then there's the inspiring and uplifting "Your Mind’s Open", a great
composition based on a really original keyboard arrangement (also played
by Hanemann), but not in the frenzy stabbing way, just much more in an
orchestrated build providing an excellent aural melody.

And later, we find some kind of a buried diamond; "About to Make the
Time", a genial acoustic / electric driven song with a steady riff and
good bass presence throughout. It is a philosophical song which
establishes a long pattern that works very well with repetition and
should have been placed as the last song on the album – it would have
been a gem of a closer.
This could be another mistake in "3.V", a wrong song sequence. But as
said, always the important thing is the good music and this album is
plenty of it.

"3.V" would be Zebra's last studio album for 16 years, a swan song of
sorts as they spent their last creative energy on this final run at
fame, and certainly delivered a great recording.
This very good three-piece band did not spend a long time on the US
national scene, nor did they have tremendous success while they were on
that scene. But there is no doubt that Zebra made some unique and
original music while they were there.
They are, in a sense, a rare and secret gem of a band which fewer have
enjoyed than legitimately should have, especially this "3.V", a quite
brilliant album which deserves to be discovered not only by the new
generations, also by ol' time Melodic Rock / AOR fans that ignored it at
the time.
Superb Japanese SHM-CD remaster.

01 - Can't Live Without
02 - He's Making You The Fool
03 - Time
04 - Your Mind's Open
05 - Better Not Call
06 - You'll Never Know
07 - About to Make The Time
08 - You're Only Losing Your Heart
09 - Hard Living Without You
10 - Isn't That The Way

Lead Vocals, Guitar, Keyboards – Randy Jackson
Bass, Keyboards, Vocals – Felix Hanemann
Drums, Percussion, Vocals – Guy Gelso

Disponible sólo a los usuarios
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ojotigreFecha: Lunes, 2013-10-21, 11:40 AM | Mensaje # 2
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Forum » Albumes » Novedades Internacionales » ZEBRA - 3.V [Japan remaster SHM-CD] (2013)
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