Local H Here Comes the Zoo (Palm)

By: Jeff Leisawitz - ModernRock.com

Local H has been around. But disappearing bandmates, dissolving label deals and other random chaos hasn't stopped this band from recording a fistful of highly respected albums. For Here Comes the Zoo, main man Scott Lucas teamed up with former Triple Fat Action drummer Brian St. Clair. Together with a list of guest stars the guys cranked up the big guitars, stepped into the noise and amplified the aggression on ten brand new studio tracks.

Somehow Lucas managed to wire a bass pick-up to his six string. The result is a bottom end that pulses and drones and never lets go. Songs like "Hands on the Bible," "Creature Comforted" and "Half-Life" all make good use of this custom, cross-bred instrument. One of the album's finest tracks, "(Baby Wants to) Tame Me," pulls directly into a hypnotic rock groove. With the help of Wes Kidd 3 (who also appears on several other cuts) Local H picks up steam and begins to define a more original sound. Other guests include Simantha Sernaker from Simi, Josh Homme from Queens of the Stone Age and Misfit Jerry Only.

While these cats stir the game and bring unique attitudes and styles to the mix, the most valuable new face in the studio is surely producer Jack Douglas. This guy's track record speaks for itself-- Cheap Trick, Aerosmith, John Lennon and a parade of other rock royalty. On this release, Douglas's expert touch sparkles on top tunes like "5th Ave. Crazy," "Keep Your Girlfriend" and "What Would You Have Me Do?" Although Local H is probably not going to break into the history books for forging a stunning new sound, these guys do their thing very well. They rock! With volume, a healthy dose of cynicism and plenty of rock n' roll attitude, Here Comes the Zoo is a record that is not likely to calm the heart of the savage beast.