Friction – “Zone Tripper” – [Tzadik]
This is Friction’s 1995 album release, Japanese pioneer and long-running alternative rockers meet seventies riff rock and throw in experimentation such as drumNBass and techno beats sometimes into the mix. The singing – mixed as half-manic singing eq:ed like a megaphone – works wonders on these tracks. The lyrics are a mixup of Japanese and English words with some logic but who knows. A lot of guitar riffs are actually loops which throws in a hip-hop like wrench into the mix. As such this 1995 release pioneered a lot of the concurrent guitar-trio techno sound that is happening. Most tracks are hard-edge noisy riff hook songs with an anarchic feel. Some tracks are here released as alternative, refreshing and experimental remixes. This album is a good example of the Friction sound of the nineties where the band has constantly evolved and released diverse material along its career.