Volume 91, Issue 69

Friday, January 30, 1998

cheque please



By Carey Weinberg
Gazette Staff

Zygote: n..Biol. cell formed by the union of two gametes.

Zygote: n.Music. group formed by the union of five groovesters.

Make way for Toronto's up and coming Zygote whose "funkyish, rockyish sound with a mix of jazz, blues, reggaeish, percussiony kind of groovy stuff" (drummer Brian Lass' words), will be mutating the cells of London's Call the Office tomorrow night when they open for London's Zuul's Evil Disco.

Zygote has seen some recent success in Toronto playing betwixt Gypsy Soul and Fishbone at the Warehouse. Opening for Canadian legend Ronnie Hawkins and playing packed houses at the legendary El Mocambo have also garnered some attention for the cellular musicologists.

Percussionist Daniel Shlagbaum, a Western alumni, spent some time in Africa honing his craft. He played with several different tribes and he studied at the African Conservatory, Lass says. "He actually played in an African funeral."

Shlagbaum's experience is indicative of how each member brings a varied style to the band giving Zygote its unique sound.

"There's no band that stands out for me on the radio now. They all sound the same," claims Lass on the present state of music. The diversity which distinguishes this band from the norm congeals to form a dancable groove.

"Any time people get up and start groovin' on the dance floor and connecting with the band is what makes us feel great. We really enjoy feeding off each other."

Zygote's preference is definitely to play live, but they're also really excited about cutting a CD – which many of the band's fans have been anxiously awaiting. The release is due out in late April.

Lass is presently under the tutelage of a renowned jazz drummer in Toronto which helps him to incorporate interesting Latin and jazz grooves into the overall sound.

"We can appeal to a lot of people. Our sound ranges from Dave Matthews all the way to the Chili Peppers which covers the whole alternative funky scene. Phish fans can also dig our sound."

Playing with local funk artists Zuul's Evil Disco might give Londoners a chance to see a biology memory, (worth 10 per cent), morph into a music reality, (worth grooving to).

To Contact The Arts and Entertainment Department: gazent@julian.uwo.ca

Copyright The Gazette 1998