Boomkat Product Review:
Gina X Performance, Birth Control and Guru Guru dynamo, Zeus B. Held enters the early ‘80s in a reissue of his final solo album before a 30 year hiatus - a mazy trip that feels caught between prog, krautrock, new wave and disco phases
Quite the odd confection, ‘Attack Time’ sees Zeus B. Held attempt to consolidate his various strands of work, from chops in prog band Birth Control, to his disco club anthems with Gina X Performance, against the glare of an emerging MTV sound. It is sometimes successful in its efforts, as with psyched drug chug of ‘Enfant Terrible’, his lysergic country swag in ‘Cowboy on the Beach’, the glam electro-pop tune ‘Drive My Car’ or sleaze of ‘Magic Circles’. But it’s also just frankly daft and corny on a lot of counts, as in the prog pomp of ‘Raise Your Gun’ and chuff of ‘Eurode’, or OTT prog-boogie-woogie ‘Test’.
“With Attack Time’ by sound tinkerer Zeus B. Held, Bureau B is re-releasing one of the most exciting records of the original experimental Kraut-pop period. After various stints, including prog band Birth Control and underground dance tipple Gina X Performance, he also put out a string of solo releases. ’Attack Time’, originally released on Aladin in 1981, gave Zeus B. Held the opportunity to experiment sonically outside the mainstream and subversively undermine the hegemonic MTV sound of the early 1980s. Unfortunately, the album was a commercial failure at the time. So it’s all the nicer that it’s now being brought out into the world again with all its supposed contradictions between enraptured New Wave, cosmic electronics and weird rock grooves.”