Zebrahead – MFZB

ZebraheadMFZB (Columbia)

Whereas Zebrahead’s previous two efforts were well in line with the poppy, punky, slightly zany sound of bands like Goldfinger and Luckyboys Confusion, MFZB is sullied up with a harder approach, perfect for competing with the spray-on grit of the phenomenonally succesful mall punk subgenre (take a bow, Good Charlotte). From its cover art to its songcraft, Playmate of the Year was goofy and florescent; it even included a third wave ska track. What’s this new noise then? Check the harsh, duochromatic artwork of MFZB. Thrill to its workmanlike rehash of Linkin Park aggression, bolted onto a sped-up punk revivalist chassis and rendered near tuneless by dueling, blaring guitars. Sure, there’s come chant-along moments, and songs nod to accessibility with production trickery that fools the feeble mind into believing there’s actual songcraft involved. But where’s the hip-hop flavor of past records? Zebrahead’s two vocalists have forsaken the definition between them, instead yammering and yelling, angry words tumbling out of their mouths faster than they can strike a pose to sell them. Even if the band’s previous incarnation was as much a pose as their new one, at least there was some fun in that picture. MFZB scratches out the eyes of that poor Playmate on the cover of the last LP with a soiled Brillo pad. Sorry girl, you can’t compete with corporate refocusing and runny male mascara.

MFZB was evidently named after Zebrahead’s thriving fan club, people who’ve waited patiently through three years of sonic tectonics. The giddy excess of Blink-182 has given way to the wink-wink-nod-nod plastic rebellion of Benji Madden and the rest, and here’s a new Zebrahead record to roll right along with the changes. Well, keep on rolling fellas, and take your duped fans with you. Better invest in parrots and peg legs now; sea chanties are going to be all the rage three years from now.

22 thoughts on “Zebrahead – MFZB”

  1. I’m sure you could put out a better album. I’m one of those people who will Always be with Zebrahead and I have been from the start. Fuck you… You don’t mean shit to them, or anyone else. I’m done wasting my time.

  2. You, Johnny Luftus, are a complete ass. Duped fans? What the shit are you talking about. The band didnt fool any of their fans at all, infact they put out a kick ass album that your afraid to like because its not in line with “critically acclaimed” shit music.

    Eat a dick douchebag!

  3. ahahahah that review was great. lucky boys confusion suck, first off, so don’t even go there. most people OUTSIDE of the chicagoland area don’t care or know who they are. the comparison to linkin park was terrible. do you know anything about music or the words that you used to decribe their music? where’s the hip hop flavor of the last album? ahhh there wasn’t too much there to begin with. try waste of mind dildo. now if there were enough hip hop(well to your standards) on this album you would have said something like oh they haven’t done anything new and they suck. you don’t seem like you have a unbiased opinon. you are probably one of those people who think they are mr. punk rawk and hold grudges aginst bands like GC and blink for the downfall of your music. your review is crap sand so are you. grammar check please for the love of god. that just looks totally unprofessional, but what do you expect from crap huh? mine may not be good either but there is no grammar check on this.

  4. I’m with everyone else…you and your review fucking suck…you know nothing about Zebrahead…and yeah the cd was named after their fan club…the fans they care about and have stuck by their sides since the beginning…fuck you…you don’t know shit about Zebrahead…or music it general from the sounds of it…I still don’t see how ZH sound ANYTHING like Linkin Park…fuck off…and go bash some band who is actually worth bashing…


    If you had listened to “MFZB” REALLY listened to it you’d never have written such a shitty review. But of course you listened to it wanting “POTY” all over again. Well the guys have grown up and so has their music and as a LONG TIME fan I have to say this is their BEST cd to date. This cd has more heart and sincerity than any of that linkin park, good charlotte shit thats out there now. Its people like YOU that keep good bands like zh in the shadows because you give shitty reviews based on what YOU want to hear.

    so THANK YOU for keeping zh for the real fans…I didn’t want to share them with screaming 15 year olds wearing glitter anyway!

  6. Well i think it’s a great review. seriously, mr loftus really understands what zebrahead did here with this album and mr loftus has obviously listened to the record many many times. bravo!

    Now for all the ladies that said ‘f*ck you’.. let’s get it on baaaby!!!

  7. Yep, im gonna take mediocre bassist’s advice and go ahead and tell you, Mr. Loftus, that us “duped fans” from ZH’s fan club are the only ones reading your absolute SHIT review… and we are not pleased that you are slandering the incredible musicians of ZH and comparing them to bands that PALE in comparison. Like comparing Apples and Hippos. Geez, before you go and spout out some dumbass shit about Zebrahead and thier music, actually LISTEN to it first, and please dont state stuff on our behalf, it irritates me and the others and the board. Thank you.

  8. Actually SomedayillGetbackIntoU, according to Glorious Noise’s server logs, only 43 people have read this review after following the link from the mfzb board (as of right now). Compare that to the thousands of people who visit this site every day. So it’s unlikely that you guys are the only ones reading; it just seems that you’re the most vocal.

  9. Loftus, I applaud you. It takes some serious guts to be truthful about something in the face of so (surprisingly) many fans. I didn’t think anybody gave a single thought to Zebrahead or their music. I see now that they DO have fans.

    However, their music is indeed crap, and has consistently been simply following in the wake of whatever was accessible and popular at the time (note that nobody has made any claims of “originality” in defense of the album), and, although I’ve not heard the new record (yes, that is what reviews are for, to learn about thing you haven’t heard), I honestly believe what you are saying. And it is great that you have said what is honestly true and right in the face of so many (deluded) people who don’t agree.

  10. Personally, If I had to guess who produced mfzb I’d guess John Feldman. Waste of Mind and POTY had none, and little to none pop-punk influence respectively. Waste of Mind was a kick-ass record. It incorporated so many different elements and fused these to come up with an incredible style that just slapped you in the face and said “HELL YEAH! I AM THE RAINBOW COLORED ZEBRA”. The point being that zebrahead was new and different, and quite frankly, ear candy.

    I’m a zebrahead fan, lets face it, and although I don’t see the review above as too harsh, I do see it as unfair. Listen to songs like Hello Tomorrow, Runaway, Blur, and a lot of the other less “hard-sounding” songs (which are most of the songs except for maybe the set up), and tell me you don’t hear that goldfinger sound.

    I really hate goldfinger. I mean they release shit records with one or two max good tracks. the rest is pure filler and unlistenable. Luckily, zebrahead isn’t to that extent, although I do find their records to be increasingly unlistenable as a whole with a couple catchy tracks thrown in for good measure.

    Overall, if this is the direction that zebrahead is planning on continuing — I will probably skip the next record. Needless to say though, they still rock live. And, after having wanted to see them for 6 years, I finally saw them back in October. They are a must see live.

  11. What a controversy we have here…. I actually just discovered Zebrahead because I’m doing a review for my paper, and MFZB is a sick sick album- I love it. They have grown as a group and their style has evolved into something amazing. That doesn’t mean “corporate refocusing”. That’s a load of shit. They care about their fans too, or else they wouldn’t have shouted them out in the title of their album. No musical style intimidates this band, they can do it all, and I think maybe they deserve a lot more recognition than old Lufty is crediting.

  12. Sorry. Not a load of shit. It’s fine to love your fans, but don’t suddenly re-emerge with a sound perfectly aligned in the moment and then blubber that it just happened that way.


    Old Lufty.

  13. I have to say that Johnny’s take on this record is right on the money. What a complete let down. Not to mention its complete and utter lack of anything remotely interesting. Im afraid we have way too many “angry for no reason” “chain attached to my wallet” bands out there already. But its not all for nothing .. youre huge in JAPAN (everything that sucks Japan tends to love) and thats good news because it gives you another record in the future… Another chance to do somethhing .. i dont know… good and worthwhile .. Here’s a tip. Make sure once your finished with a record all the songs dont sound alike.. i couldnt tell when one song started and the other began..

  14. Ever since I first listened to Waste of Mind I’ve been really into Zebrahead. They just have such a unique sound and such incredible talent collectively as a band. Such a pompus review comes from someone who likes to think they are above everyone else by putting quality music down. Zebrahead has not sold out and never will.

  15. i don’t know what you’re talking about, loftus…. “don’t re-emerge with a sound perfectly aligned to the moment”? are you kidding? they’ve sounded exactly the same in the last three albums–in fact, probably the last four but i’ve never heard the yellow album so i can’t say for sure–albeit slightly more angst-y on waste of mind, but still. this is a band that has never gotten the credit or airplay they’ve deserved. they did the rap-rock-metal-punk thing long before anybody even heard of linkin park or any of the other shitty popular bands out there doing similar stuff. MFZB is instantly likeable. yes, a lot of the songs do sound kinda the same, but who gives a shit if they all sound good?

  16. Obviously Johnny boy here has no idea what he is talking about. ZEBRAHEAD IS THE BEST!!!! Kelli over there speaks the truth, thanks for keeping this band away from the screeming 15 year old glitter girls…. this band is for the real fans. Fuck you Johnny Loftus. And again fuck you. Your review was piece of shit and a major waste of my time.

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