Here Comes the Zoo
label: Palm Pictures
our score: 2.0 out of 5.0
buy it: here
Little Album That Could, But Didn't
takes heart, soul and energy, an energy that usually builds through
progress. For Local-H, Scott Lucas’ almost one-man band
(Lucas handles vocals, guitar and bass, while a full-time drummer
and rotating studio musicians fill-in the holes), the creative
growth was progressing nicely through this formula. The band had
been developing its own brand of alternative pop-rock since the
mid-90’s, and had cultivated a loyal and evangelical fan
Then in 1998 Lucas had the energy pulled from
underneath his proverbial feet. Universal Music absorbed his recording
company, and the new label shelved Local-H’s about-to-be
released album. Soon after, the professional setback affected
personal relationships, and Lucas’ full-time drummer quit
(in case you weren’t following closely, that’s 50
% of the band). Not a good year for Local-H.
the Zoo is a living representation of Lucas’ artistic
recovery. Teamed up with new drummer Brian St. Clair (formerly
of Triple Fast Action), the new album is the beginning of the
long-road to recapturing the creative energy once lost. While
the album fails to deliver a sense of thematic direction or completeness,
it does provide a glimpse of the balls-to-the wall creativity
and soul Lucas’ can bring to his music.
The first track “Hands on the Bible” sets the tone
for the rest of the album; as it gets started, revs-up, and then
doesn’t go anywhere. Most of the tracks are structured like
the opening composition, complete with toe-tapping, catchy build-ups
to non-existent crescendos, which leaves the listener with an
anti-climactic hunger for more.
the Zoo does tease us with small samples of the artistic
zeal Lucas had developed before things went loose in 1998, particularly
on “Fifth Ave. Crazy”, where both the female chorus
and wailing guitar serve as hooks, and with the catchy pop-rock
chorus on “(Baby Wants To) Tame Me”. Lucas has stayed
true to the persona that brought him success, with screaming vocals,
hard guitars and even harder drum beats throughout the album.
the album as whole fails to achieve the high expectations you
can hear it setting for itself. No doubt the professional and
personal disruption Lucas endured has affected his abilities,
and perhaps his two-man structure no longer has enough synergistic
energy to fuel his creativity. But here’s for trying things
on your own terms, hopefully next time it produces better results.
liked Here Comes the Zoo...
1. Hands on the Bible
3. Son of "Cha!"
4. 5th ave. Crazy
5. (Baby Wants To) Tame Me
6. Rock & Roll Professionals
7. Keep Your Girlfriend
8. Creature Comforted
9. Bryn-Mawr Stomp
10. What Would You Have Me Do?