Zombie Apocalypse / Send More Paramedics - Tales Told by Dead Men (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Zombie Apocalypse / Send More Paramedics

Tales Told by Dead Men (2005)


Zombie Apocalypse's debut, This Is a Spark of Life was a remarkably good record; despite the pedigree of the band extending to bands like Shai Hulud and try.fail.try, the band took a different tact, focusing on speedy tempos, cartoonish imagery and melodic hardcore instead of the more experimental inclinations of those bands.

With their split with England's Send More Paramedics, the band has upped the ante even further, focusing on writing more hooks, and improving the prominence of every positive detail on their debut. In the short twelve minutes the band contributes to the disc, they manage to plow through five tracks which are melodic, heavy and littered with samples which are alternatingly silly and spooky.

The one-and-a-half minute "Murder by a Lady Now" rips open with an air-guitar worthy piece of hyperspeed riffing; "God I Hope the Data Is Lying" manages to pack melody and aggression into a one-minute package with no filler and no nonsense; even the unorthodox five-minute title track manages to work on the strength of the songwriting, which harkens back to both Danzig and Shai Hulud.

The second half of the split, which comes from Send More Paramedics -- a likeminded horror-obsessed band -- is more influenced by thrashy skatepunk. But like their full-length, the band seems to suffer from being overly derivative; the horror schtick is usually instant gold with me, but unfortunately the songwriting doesn't match up and the goofy lyrics don't help as much as they could. The nasal vocals are more a matter of taste than execution, but the thin sound of the instrumentation doesn't do much to help in the presentation either.

Zombie Apocalypse's contributions to the split are above average, memorable and essential; on the other hand, Send More Paramedics seem less committed to the split and deliver a sound that sounds like it could have come from any post-D.R.I. crossover act and do little to seperate themselves from that pack.