Zebrahead Band, An Orange County, California-based, continue to take their genre-hopping fusion with a new song titled Middle Seat Blues which blends devil-may-care grooves with their signature punk and metal fusion.
The band, which consists of Ali Tabatabaee (vocalist/rapper), Adrian Estrella (vocalist/guitarist), Ben Osmundson (bassist), Ed Udhus (drummer), and Dan Palmer (guitarist), tells the meaning of the single Middle Seat Blues.
“Surround yourself with quality, not quantity. Not everyone around you thinks what’s best for you. Middle Seat Blues is just about that,” said the band’s frontman, Estrella.
“Imagine a song that mixes a little bit of metal, a little bit of relaxed groove, and a little bit of punk on top. Hard to imagine right? Well, listen to Middle Seat Blues,” Osmundson added.
Middle Seat Blues is taken from Zebrahead’s latest EP, II, which was released on February 3. The single is raucous pop-punk with a bit of oomph in their stride.
From one long studio session, songs for the EP III, II, I series emerged. EP II is the follow-up to EP III which was released in 2021.
Many fans are expecting EP I to be released in late fall 2023 with the release of the song and music video. Zebrahead has even made plans to tour throughout 2023 including appearances at the Slam Dunk Festival and When We Were Young Festival.
The release of the single Middle Seat Blues was hailed as a triumph over what proved to be one of the pop-punk rock unit’s proudest moments. You can listen to the single for a duration of 3 minutes and 10 seconds on various music streaming platforms.
Zebrahead is a pop-punk band formed in 1996 in La Habra, California in the summer. Guitarist Greg Bergdorf, drummer Ed Udhus, and singer and rhythm guitarist Justin Mauriello were the musicians who sparked the idea to work together.
Their band at the time shared the same rehearsal room, and it was from there that they became acquainted with each other after experimenting with different styles of music together. This caused them to leave their respective bands and form Zebrahead.
Inspired by bands such as Fugazi and Descendents, Zebrahead who were not interested in local music trends at that time began to experiment and incorporate elements of hip-hop into their sound.
It was then that rapper Ali Tabatabaee as a co-vocalist joined the band. The first song, Check was composed and later included on their first demo tape titled One More Hit.
The band released their self-titled debut album in April 1998 through the indie label Doctor Dream Records before signing to major label, Columbia Records.
Through Columbia Records, Zebrahead released their mainstream debut with Waste of Mind in late 1998. The album included several re-recorded tracks from their demo releases along with new songs, including the No. 1 radio hit Get Back. 32 on the US Hot Modern Rock Tracks chart.
Playmate of the Year, which followed up the success of their debut album, was released in August 2000. The album managed to occupy the No.4 position on the US Top Heatseekers chart. Not long after, Zebrahead recorded and released their fourth studio album, titled MFZB in 2003.
Unfortunately, the MFZB album will be their last release under the auspices of the Columbia Records label. The album was notable for supplanting the funk hip-hop elements of the band’s previous releases for a heavier punk rock sound.
Zebrahead achieved new milestones with the release of Broadcast to the World in February 2006 in Japan, where it was certified gold. Thanks to that, the Broadcast to the World album was published in other countries as time went by.
Not much different from other bands, Zebrahead also experienced personnel changes. The band announced the departure of guitarist Greg Bergdorf, who has opted out to spend more time with his family.
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At the same time, Zebrahead released their tenth studio album titled Call Your Friends in August 2013. Death By Stereo lead guitarist Dan Palmer later joined to replace Bergdorf as Zebrahead’s new guitarist.
To celebrate the 20th anniversary of Zebrahead’s formation, the band released their first compilation album, titled Greatest Hits? – Volume 1 on March 11, 2015, exclusively in Japan.
In addition to familiar material, the compilation featured several re-recorded songs from the band’s previous albums featuring Matty Lewis as the vocalist and lead rhythm guitarist.
Again, Zebrahead again had to lose members. This time it was Matty Lewis’ turn to leave the band in April 2021. Instead, they announced that Adrian Estrella would be the main vocalist on June 28, 2021.
The band’s first single with Estrella, Lay Me to Rest, premiered on July 30, 2021. Meanwhile, EP III, also the band’s first release with Estrella, was released on November 26, 2021.