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PRE-ORDER - A-Z 'A-Z' LP 180g Black Vinyl - RELEASE DATE 12th August 2022

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SKU:
039841600919
£20.89

Expected release date is 12th Aug 2022

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When Mark Zonder, famed former Fates Warning and Warlord drummer, started working on material in early 2020 he had a very clear vision for the band he wanted to put together. “I was thinking beer commercials, car commercials and Cobra Kai. I wanted to have a very accessible band that would appeal to the masses and would lead to the ability to tour larger venues and build a second and third record off the success of the first. I did not want to hear things like, ‘I don’t hear a single, it is too proggy, I just don’t get it, let me listen to it a few more times’. I knew from myself and the others that I would recruit, it would have some sophisticated music parts but the big hook was the main priority.” The result was A-Z, and while Zonder is adamant it is not a supergroup that is doing a ‘one and done’ record it has a stellar lineup, reuniting him with Fates Warning vocalist Ray Alder, Warlord/Steve Vai/Ring of Fire bassist Philip Bynoe, guitarist Joop Wolters and keyboardist Vivien Lalu, the combination of these players stirring up a very specific kind of magic that could not be replicated.

The band’s name came courtesy of Alder - A-Z = Alder thru Zonder - and it fit straight away. “What I liked is that it did not limit what someone would think of the band. If we named the band Scary Serpent it would give a certain direction and I did not want people to prejudge the band and record,” Zonder says. Likewise, self-titling the record made sense. “I did not want to give a direction idea to the audience. If we named the album Far Side of the Horizon, people would probably think ‘prog band’. But if you named it The Machine Gunner, it would give a totally different direction for thought.” For artwork, wanting to again get the best possible contributor, they turned to the famed Hugh Syme (Rush, Fates Warning), who delivered the vivid image of a zebra eating an apple, encompassing the band name in a sly way. “Again, hire the best people you can find and just let them do what they do. The artwork is absolutely fantastic and really fits the whole concept. He is truly the best. Just a great guy to work with.”

Tracklisting

Side A:

1. Trial By Fire

2. The Far Side of the Horizon

3. The Machine Gunner

4. Rise Again

5. Window Panes

Side B:

6. Run Away

7.Stranded

8. At the Waters Edge

9. Borrowed Time

10. Sometimes

 

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