For their sophomore release for Ferret, influential metalcore act, Zao has enlisted legendary producer Steve Albini. Albini, a veteran producer who was responsible for major releases from Nirvana and the Pixies, also handled a number of underground favorites like records from Neurosis, Slint, Pegboy, F-Minus and The Ex.
The band is currently demoing material for the record, which drummer Jeff Gretz has jokingly dubbed The George Lucas Neckfat, and plans to enter Albini's Electrical Audio studios in January. A Spring release is planned.
The band will soon release The Lesser Lights of Heaven, a double-DVD which will span the band's entire career and is due out in October. It was directed by longtime friend and manager Ryan Downey, a music journalist and former writer/producer for MTV and reporter for MSNBC. The set will include a two-hour documentary with interviews with the present lineup, ex-members, friends, label staff and peers in other bands. talking about the history and influence of the band. It is due out November 15th.