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Zenith Effluveum picture
Zenith Effluveum biography
ZENITH EFFLUVEUM are an obscure oddity from Rochester, NY. The band members were high school friends: Carl Mack on drums (still musically active today), Michael Ferrera (who wrote the most songs, sadly he passed away a few years ago) and Kim Fabris. (There's a rumour that Greg Prevost of Chesterfield Kings contributed on their only record but the actual truth is he was recording in the same basement, but not appearing on the record.)

The band was influenced by Can, Amon Duul, Faust, Floh de Cologne, Magma, Silver Apples, Henry Cow and many more.

They performed in CBGB in '77, and in '78 their self-released debut Almost Made It In The USA saw the light of the day. It's clearly a labour of love rather than a high-quality production achievement: it's a low fidelity, one take recording on a 4-track. Apparently there are some Moog Taurus pedals and clarinets there...

The second incarnation of the band, Zenith II came about in 1983, but it's unknown whether they have any releases or not.

Moris Mateljan, 2009. (thanks to Carl Mack for some valuable information)

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3.92 | 5 ratings
Almost Made It In The USA

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 Almost Made It In The USA by ZENITH EFFLUVEUM album cover Studio Album, 1978
3.92 | 5 ratings

Almost Made It In The USA
Zenith Effluveum Psychedelic/Space Rock

Review by DamoXt7942
Forum & Site Admin Group Avant/Cross/Neo/Post Teams

4 stars What an interesting obscurity. ZENITH EFFULUVEUM have done a fantastic "controversial" work via this only one album.

The first burst "Almost" is already a killer for the audience. After a vague explosion with percussion, scattered voices and plays completely get liquified like smelly grease. This texture is so psychedelic (in a sense, of Krautrock) that we cannot easily accept their heavier rock sounds launched later. Without intention, we are likely to hum their funky phrases. "Almost Made It In The USA" sounds in the same vein of the previous burst but for us more freakout and unrefined actually. Not simply spacey but experimental and persistent like Can's "Monster Movie" (hm, also voices sound like Malcolm's lol). Yeah exactly, not unified at all ... the latter part has fascinating acid folk-ish flavour all around like Siloah or Ya Ho Wha 13. The following "Millions" is stickier and crazier, with the taste of the previous acid folk. Deep drumming dread knocks our ears gradually away into their infernal space, along with trippy, kinky instrumental outrage. Drone shouts during their slimy psychedelia are quite impressive. Cannot find any stability via their play upon Side A.

"Opie - Plod Rock - Wholes" suite upon Side B can be called as their musical (and life) collective, let me say. Each part is not so novel nor innovative but bluesy psychedelia based upon guitar fuzzes, mad piano quakes and cheesy voices really. But wait, the "commune" of all the parts can launch magnificent power along with their freaky shout bombs, unrefined piano traps, and especially drunken guitar footprints, all of which can drive us crazy. Dirty laundry psychic agents are launched and spoil our brain directly in rapid succession. Anyway the middle scene "Plod Rock" has a bit melodious chops and we cannot help chuckling. Basically they played dead seriously and eccentrically, so the horn section sounds like a joke, honestly to say. The last voices and sounds are too tumbledown for us to avoid listening hard ... Can be called as a "demolished, wacky psychedelia", that should get controversy amongst progressive (particularly psychedelic progressive) fans. Recommended as an unknown / eccentric gem.

Thanks to clarke2001 for the artist addition.

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