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124) Zones - Under Influence

Everyone has heard of Midge Ure. Mainly for Ultravox and Do They Know It’s Christmas. Big fans of his, not me I must confess, will know he was also in Thin Lizzy and Rich Kids, but his first number one was with a band called Slik with the song Forever and Ever.

Slik never matched this success and decided on a name change to PVC2 and embrace punk. Ure soon departed to join Glen Matlock’s Rich Kids.

The remaining three members recruited Willie Gardner on lead vocals and The Zones were formed (we got there in the end).

The Zones were around for two years but apart from a John Peel session never really established themselves and went their separate ways in 1979.

Under Influence was their only album. It’s ten tracks of post punk new wave and reminds me of early Squeeze or XTC but is just missing something that those bands had.

Opener Do It All Again starts us well with a nice riff and I like the bands backing vocals and goes straight into Vision On with a chugging guitar that’s always going to get me before becoming more dramatic with the keyboards.

Mainman highlights lead singer Willie Gardner’s vocals, all acoustic guitar as it builds to a big chorus, then the guitar kicks in and is the highlight for me.

Strength to Strength I enjoy the drums and the album ends with Mourning Star which layers and layers and finishes the album on a high note.

I enjoyed this, it’s good and catchy and they possibly deserve to be remembered better than they are.


GIVE IT A STREAM: You can’t but give it a listen on YouTube and see what you think but if you only fancy a listen to one song give Mainman a go.

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