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Articles Home » 2012 Articles » ZZ Top - 2012 La Futura
ZZ Top - 2012 La Futura

ALBUM: La Futura
LABEL: American Recordings
SERIAL: 0602537141135
YEAR: 2012


LINEUP: Billy Gibbons - vocals, guitar * Dusty Hill - bass * Frank Beard - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 I Gotsta Get Paid * 02 Chartreuse * 03 Consumption * 04 Over You * 05 Heartache In Blue * 06 I Don't Wanna Lose, Lose, You * 07 Flyin' High * 08 It's Too Easy Manana * 09 Big Shiny Nine * 10 Have A Little Mercy



After the less than stellar review afforded the 'Texicali' EP previewing the first four tracks of this album by George, I had reservations about bothering with this one. Seeing I haven't listened to anything by these guys since 1994's 'Antenna' I thought I'd give it a spin out of curiosity more than actual interest. What's amazing is this is the first ZZ Top album since 2003's 'Mescalero' which I have yet to hear and most likely never will. Having reached the point of their career where new music could probably be considered redundant this is probably a miracle to their fans. Whether or not it offers anything major to their repertoire I'm uncertain, as it's more of the same the band has always offered, standard Texas blues boogie, with scant moments of excitement.

The Songs
With George having thoroughly disseminated the first four tracks in his review, there isn't much more to add. In fact I totally agree with his observations, 'Chartreuse' the pick of the bunch, simply because it's good old-fashioned boogie. The rest are strictly average, with the production referred to by George slightly grating, with the obvious attempt to infuse a crude sense of rawness to the proceedings. But how about the remaining six tracks? To be honest they don't differ a great deal. 'Heartache In Blues' is another slow blues drawl with an abundance of harmonica, the trademark riffs there for all to be heard. The melody of 'I Don't Wanna Lose, Lose You' is more tuneful however, but once again the same monotonous rhythm is utilized, ambling along with no real sense of purpose. Let's be fair, these guys could have conjured this up in five minutes. I'm sure purists will be delighted with the blues quotient, but to my ears it's anything but exciting. The chorus to 'Flying High' has a certain radio appeal to it, but like the tracks before it the tempo is so predictable that it stilts everything else. Taking this into account what is definitely not needed is another drawn out track, this time a ballad of sorts 'It's Too Easy Manana'. This is excruciating to get through in one sitting such is the already mentioned blues drawl. I realize this is the bands trademark sound, but it just isn't viable to my ears anymore. It shouldn't be surprising that 'Big Shiny Nine' and Have A Little Mercy' follow the same trend as all the above. What's wrong with some full-on boogie? I guess those days are as extinct as the bands AOR flirtations, which beats this any day.

In Summary
This is all rather uninspiring and I can't see myself ever listening to this again. Somewhere along the way ZZ Top became one of the most boring bands walking the earth, remarkably like frequent touring partner Lynyrd Skynyrd. Clearly the blueprint for the album was to restore the feel of the early albums, but in an updated style that supposedly suits the age we live in. To me it's just another ZZ Top album and one that has no true highlight. This really is for diehards only.

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#1 | Jez on September 11 2012 15:06:53
Hmm.. Pretty much liking this one tbh (along with the new Lynyrd Skynyrd album as well) and it's definitely the best ZZ album for a long long time. 'I Gotsa Get Paid' and 'Chartreause' are both great, as is the ballad 'Over You' and I didn't find any tracks on here that I didn't like and I played the damn thing 5 or 6 times in the van yesteday. All in all a good one for me that slips nicely alongside alot of the other quality ZZ releases.
#2 | gdazegod on September 12 2012 01:18:29
Jez, you must be kidding me. This is pretty dire stuff, no way does it hold a candle up as the best ZZ Top album for a long time. I'd describe it as the 'only' ZZ Top album for a long time. Alun's 5/10 rating is too generous. Rick Rubin would be the last guy I would have producing my record.
#3 | Jez on September 12 2012 15:26:55
We'll have to agree to disagree on this one mate, which is why music is so good. To my ears this is way way better than anything since 'Antenna' onwards..Gone are those fuzzed up guitars that were on 'Rhythmeen' and 'XXX' and at least they have tried to get back to their 'Sound'. No it's no 'Tres Hombres' or 'Eliminator' but for me me stands somewhere in the middle of their discogrpahy.
#4 | rkbluez on September 19 2012 00:03:33
Sounds pretty good to me also's no Tres Hombres by a long shot...but it's good old fashion sounding dirty bluesy ZZ before they went AOR synth radio friendly...and became MTV me this is more of what ZZ were all about...Eliminator was OK but IMO real ZZ is raw power trio bluesy guitar rock.
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