50 Unheralded Albums from 2011

Zechs Marquise: Getting PaidZechs MarquiseGetting Paid (Sargent House /Rodriguez Lopez Productions, 9/27/11)

Zechs Marquise: “Static Lovers”

El Paso-based psych-prog five-piece Zechs Marquise is three-fifths Rodriguez Lopez, a surname that gained music-industry notoriety from Omar, the prolific Mars Volta guitarist.

Though its official debut album, the 2009 effort Our Delicate Stranded Nightmare, was a much more experimental and atmospheric work, Getting Paid fully focuses on the groove. Each of the album’s nine tracks moves at its own pace, venturing into an alternate sonic universe at a moment’s notice. Abrupt tempo shifts, an inexhaustible junk drawer of textures, and a healthy obsession with ’70s prog fusion culminate in a truly shape-shifting record, albeit one that consistently rocks. Zechs Marquise knows when to give into its sweaty, twisted vision-quest dalliances and when to let a groove ride.

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