Zeni Geva make furious noise without going anywhere, saying anything. They are a forceful band, throwing all their energy into these nihilistic songs. The results are halfway intriguing, but ultimately, 10,000 Light Years is devoid of any true feeling or presence. The songs are loud and angry. So what?
Zeni Geva’s music sounds like outtakes from the soundtrack to The Matrix. It would be good for some two-minute hyped-up action scene, but do you really need a whole album of it? After about 10 minutes of 10,000 Light Years you realize that the answer is a very obvious “no”.
Which isn’t to say Zeni Geva are really that bad. They do utilize their skills in creating songs that twist around at terrifying speeds. Unfortunately, this seems to be their only talent, and while the screaming guitars and frenzied drums are exciting at first, after 40 minutes of this, it gets dull. None of the songs break away from the others, and while the album claims to have eight songs, they all sound exactly the same. Perhaps the unity of 10,000 Light Years is admirable, but when you could just listen to the title track eight times and get the same effect, you have to wonder what those seven other songs are doing there.
While the lyrics are in both Japanese and English, Zeni Geva are pretty hard to understand in either. The English lyrics are pretty standard, with lead singer Kazuyuki K. Null yelling things like “Destroy yourself” repeatedly (as on “Hazchem”). Fortunately for everyone involved, 10,000 Light Years is mostly instrumental, with words only interjecting themselves every now and then. Although, it would have been better if the words added something to the music rather than being as mindless as they are.
The band’s biggest flaw is that their music is missing any sort of emotional connection with the listener. It’s fine to be angry, but Zeni Geva’s anger doesn’t seem to be based on anything. They are just raging against the world without reason. It works for them for a few minutes, but those who need some sort of substance behind this will get bored with it quickly. What talent they have seems wasted in this empty music. They would almost be great if they had something to say.
Zeni Geva are kind of fun, but that fun is fleeting. Once the initial impression of their hyperactive wrath wears off (and it wears off quickly), you’re left with nothing but repetitively boring music. As much as you’d want 10,000 Light Years to be good, it will never satisfy you on that level.
// Notes from the Road
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