Savage Canadian Punk
The past few years have seen the revival of many early punk sounds, but one that has been overwhelmingly overlooked is horror punk. And while Canada’s ZEX are not exactly the Horrorpops, their newest record, Fight For Yourself, certainly conjures up memories of Zombina and the Skeletones. There are any number of enthusiastic and talented raw street punk bands playing in any number of basements across the world, and, in 2015, it takes something bold to be able to stand out. Luckily for ZEX, Gretchen Steel’s voice tears through the din with some real ferocity.
Fight for Yourself starts with the title track, a fast paced and catchy song that sets the tone perfectly for the rest of the record. Right out of the gate, it is clear the ZEX is going to have you up on your feet. Songs like “Screaming at the Wall” showcase Steel’s unique and powerful voice. “On Our Own,” one of the strongest tracks on the record, shows a melodic side to the band’s sound that is definitely intriguing. All in all, the songs are somewhat uniform…if you can call anything that comes out of street punk uniform. There is nothing surprising or unexpected with ZEX but they are fun, full of spunk, and just a bit snotty and that’s exactly the kind of punk that will help combat all the snow this winter.
The punk scene is always in need of new exciting sounds and fortunately for punk fans, it seems to never be in short supply. ZEX is the band who’s house show you stumbled into after midnight, not quite sure how you ended up there. The band you’d rage to for hours and spend the next day telling all your friends about but assumed you’d never get to see again. But if they continue to put out records as strong as Fight for Yourself, we’ll hopefully be hearing a lot more from ZEX.