ZIMMERS HOLE - Thrashing Ridiculously!
by Martin Popoff
Watch 'em live and you will be slayed harder than Slayer. Get their new record, and you will be thrashed within an inch of your life - but at least you'll be laughing so hard, the pain will pale. While You Were Shouting At The Devil... We Were In League With Satan is the album's Megadeth-length title, and the music enclosed is clean-burning speed mayhem designed to get you... actually enjoying yourself at a metal show.
"The last two albums were more like stream of consciousness-type things," begins guitarist Jed Simon, asked to compare the record with the two that preceded it. "They were definitely metal, and occasionally funny... maybe a little more than occasionally - maybe occasionally ridiculous. But I think they were a little too varied, just kind of all over the map, channel clicker. So we wanted to make a more traditional-style vibe here, while still retaining our having a good time, delivering the goods - that's my Judas Priest reference for the day. We want to accomplish a bond with metal fans, with true metal fans who are hungry. When we play live, I want a sea of heads banging, up and down. I don't wan to see running in a circle, or running in opposite directions. I want a sea of headbanging. That's what it's all about. That's true metal (laughs)."
Zimmers of course, has always been viewed as some sort of Strapping Young Lad side-project, given that it consists of that band's second banana guitarist Jed, plus Gene Hoglan on drums and Byron Stroud on bass. Big difference though at the front man position, with Zimmers swallowed up whole by a behemoth known as The Heathen.
"He's a character, that guy," enthuses Simon. "He almost lives that character. That's why we don't even... his name is Chris (Valagao), but we call him The Heathen or whatever applies at the moment (i.e. Dr. Heathen Hooch, Lorde Of Ass-Fire, E.Val). He's crazy, he's off his rocker, he's always doing something. He's probably one of the smartest guys I've ever met in my life. Absolutely brilliant guy. He works in the film industry. He has a custom motorcycle shop where he builds choppers. Very, very skilled and intelligent human being, but also absolutely out of his mind. And I don't mean that in a negative way at all. He's just go, go, go; he's always on. Wonderful friend; I've known him for almost 20 years now. I mean, we started this thing together. What can I say about the guy? He's doing the background vocals on all the SYL and Devin Townsend records all these years. Fantastic vocalist. Devin and him have a good relationship, and that's why we brought Devin in to produce the vocals. Because they know each other so well, and we figured Devin could pull the best performance out of him."
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