That little ol’ band from Texas, ZZ Top, is back in the studio after a nine year absence with a new EP, Texicali. Anything is welcome from the legendary Texas trio, especially a teaser of a forthcoming full length album. Texicali has four tracks that boast Rick Rubin as the producer. With a bonified star producer and ZZ Top’s superstar status, Texicali should be a homerun. The actual result is a solid double.
Texicali features the single, “I Gotsa Get Paid,” which is a rap song given the ZZ Top treatment. A nod to their 1972 song “Just Got Paid,” “I Gotsta Get Paid,” feels like it was written by Billy Gibbons. “Chartreuse,” the strongest cut sounds like an homage to their 1975 classic, “Tush” with a little something extra, which is always a good thing. “Consumption,” is an above average song that has its place. The closer, “Over You,” is about the closest thing ZZ Top will ever do to a love song, and they do it well.
The overall sound of Texicali is a throwback to ZZ Top’s early heyday in the 1970s. A welcome shift away from more commercially successful albums in the 1980s and 1990s that lack that ZZ Top edge. The only issue with Texicali is that at times it sounds a bit overproduced. This band is one that is at their best with a raw, gritty sound and while Texicali echoes that lyrically, the music has a tendency to sound too mechanized and inorganic. That being said, it is a nice harbinger of things to come.
The Review: 7.5/10
The Big Hit
Review by Charles Dumez