Zao Legendary

They’ve been forging their metalcore for years now, but Zao just never seem to get attention from metal types, no doubt due to their spiritual concerns more than anything else. Look, you can have one (ok, two, counting Stryper) Christian releases in your goddamn CD collection to balance out all the goofy Satanic metal in there, can’t you? Sure, especially when it’s this great. Legendary is a retrospective look at Zao’s career, culling tracks from all their releases (spare the non-Solid State released debut). It’s a fun listen, the band laying down a sound that no one else could ever really hope to do; thrash riffs meet technical stops ‘n’ starts on cold ice, with a general vibe of soul-cleansing and aggression unleashed permeating the proceedings. They’re legends in the sub-sub-genre, so if you care about today’s metal/hardcore bands, there’s no way to avoid checking out Zao. And hey, this is as good a place as any to start (but I also highly recommend their Parade Of Chaos and self-titled albums), but if you’ve already got the albums, don’t bother spending your cash here. And if you’re attempting to follow the status of the band (it’s futile to try and keep up to speed, by the way) looks like as of this moment, they’re back together again. (Solid State)