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Friday, June 18 2010 00:00

AUTHORITY ZERO - STORIES OF SURVIVAL (Review)

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61NRjPRDoZL. SL500 AA300 Back for their fourth studio album, Mesa, AZ's AUTHORITY ZERO carries the flag for timely and politically-charged punk rock.

Like many of their older peers (BAD RELIGION, PENNYWISE, et al), Authority Zero works an in-your-face angle with their fast and ferocious punk rock chords laying down the foundation for crystal-clear vocals that convey emotion without becoming overbearing, though they break the mold on occasion to throw in some tasty ska and reggae grooves. STORIES OF SURVIVAL continues that musical tradition, while tackling the current Global Climate from economic downfall to the state of the ever-changing music industry.

After an intro courtesy of the late Winston Churchill's "Blood, Sweat, Tears, and Toil" speech, "The New Pollution" recalls mid-90's DOWN BY LAW with it's up-tempo call-to-arms complemented perfectly by a chorus destined to become a crowd sing-along at future live shows. STORIES starts off right, grabbing you by the ears and strapping you in for the ride.

"Big Bad World" is a highlight of the record, a reggae-flavored number depicting the plight of the hard-working man "breaking their back for another day," slaving to make ends meet while being physically, financially, and emotionally abused by those above them in the corporate hierarchy.

"Movement" and "The Remedy" also veer into the reggae and ska realms, reminding you of how effective the band is when locked into a groove.

After nearly 20 years as a band, Authority Zero has aged well - not necessarily changing their sound, but becoming tighter and more polished over time.

STORIES OF SURVIVAL will be available on June 22, 2010 via VIKING FUNERAL, a joint venture by Fletcher Dragge of PENNYWISE, Ken Seaton of Hardline Entertainment, and SUBURBAN NOIZE RECORDS.

Rating: 4/5

James Zahn

James Zahn is best-known as The Rock Father™, a media personality, commentator, adventurer and raconteur. He is the Owner, Publisher, and Editor-in-Chief of THE ROCK FATHER™ Magazine. In January, 2019, after nearly a decade of publishing The Rock Father™ Magazine, he joined Adventure Media and Events as Senior Editor of The Toy Book—the leading trade publication for the toy industry since 1984, as well as The Pop Insider — a destination for all things pop culture, and The Toy Insider — the leading consumer guide for toys and games. He is also editor of The Toy Report, a weekly newsletter published by The Toy Book each Thursday. Zahn has over 27 years of experience in the entertainment, retail and publishing industries.

He regularly serves as a Brand Ambassador and spokesperson for several Globally-recognized pop culture and lifestyle brands in addition to consulting for a number of toy manufacturers. 

Creatively, James has directed/edited music videos, lyric videos, and album trailers for bands such as FEAR FACTORY, has appeared as an actor in feature films and commercials, written comic books, and performed in bands. He currently serves as an artist manager and video director for PRODUCT OF HATE, whose debut album was released by Napalm Records in 2016, distributed by ADA/Warner Music in the U.S. with Universal Music handling global. A new album has been completed and is set for release this year.

Zahn and/or his work have been featured in/on CNN, NBC, ABC, WGN, CBS, GCTN, G4, The Chicago Tribune, Forbes, MarketWatch, Reuters, BusinessWire, Fangoria, Starlog and more. He's appeared as a music expert on CNN's AC360 alongside Anderson Cooper, and has been interviewed by Larry King. In the past he served as a writer for the Netflix Stream Team,  Fandango Family and PBS KIDS, penned articles for Sprout and PopSugar, and was a contributor to Chicago Parent.

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