Where 1970’s Italy had Goblin, 21st century Pittsburgh has Zombi. The prog duo’s latest EP, Liquid Crystal, was released last week on Relapse Records.
Liquid Crystal displays Zombi’s skill at creating sweeping, epic instrumental pieces using the classic prog toolkit (see: badass guitars, bombastic drums, cinematic synths). Like the stratospheric manta rays gliding across its cover, the album’s songs are majestic and unearthly, conjuring strange realms and epic journeys; it’s the a soundtrack to a fantasy/adventure movie that exists only in the mind. Closer “Black Forest” begins with flitting synths and Moricone-meets-Lethal Weapon guitar licks before gradually building to a drum-led, full-tilt gallop, the kind of thing that brings to mind an upper atmosphere chase scene. It’s the kind of stirring, retrofuturist anthem that could lead to speeding tickets if consumed while on the move.