WHILE receiving much critical acclaim the 'Zombieland' release by German band Megaherz left
us a little non-plussed, and not just because the band sing in their native tongue.
Caught between straightforward rock and the melodrama of Rammstein it seemed not to have a singular identity compared to their earlier release 'Gotterdammerung'.
But the four new tracks on 'Erdwärts' have a cohesiveness and sense of purpose and, at times a sense of menace.
Opener 'Wer hat Angst vor'm Schwarzen Mann' has a steady, strong riff, counterpointed with children singing in key passages.
The lyric, apparently is "fear is at the heart of it all: fear of the unknown and fear of a world that seems chaotic and out of control".
But perhaps the most revelatory song is 'Glorreiche Zeiten` (‘Glorious times‘), which after the onslaught of the first two tracks is uplifting without any need to understand the words. After a couple of listens this one will find its way on to many a playlist.
Lex's vocals are sensual and soaring, while Christian and Christph's guitars play alongside each other without overdoing layers as is too common in modern metal. And aurally it seems as if Werner (bass) and Jürgen (drums) are simply enjoying themselves.
As is common with Mehaherz's previous releases they've added new recordings of previous tracks. 'Teufel' and 'Jordan' have been dusted down, stripped back and re-built. Much better than the 'originals' without departing too much.
'Erdwärts' is such a complete six-track ep that we will be going back to 'Zombieland' to re-assess Megaherz.