Zebrahead is a Punk Rap
group consisting of Ali Tabatabaee, Matty Lewis, Ed Udhus, Ben Osmundson, and Dan Palmer, providing a bizarre yet interesting mix of high-energy rock guitar and high-energy hip-hop style singing. Over the years their style has evolved from a more funk hip-hop style in their early albums to a more refined hard rock sound, with rapping (usually by Ali, who as an actual rapper nicely makes his rapping flow with and transition to and from Matty's non-rap vocals) mixed in.
Mostly unheard of in America, they're strangely popular in Japan. This was enough to warrant Ali and Matty being called on to perform the main theme to the 2006 Sonic the Hedgehog
game, "His World", which (along with the rest of that game's soundtrack) is arguably the best thing about that game. They also came out with a full band remix of said song, which is arguably even cooler
. (Crush 40
later made another version of "His World" as noted on their page.)
They also have a thing about singing womens' cover songs, as they released a cover of Wannabe (yes, that
Wannabe) by the Spice Girls (yeah, those
Spice Girls), and released a whole album of womens' pop covers, Panty Raid.
This band's discography consists of:
- Yellow (1998)
- Waste of Mind (1998)
- Playmate of the Year (2000)
- MFZB (2003): Also note that this is when the band began to shift in a more rock-oriented direction.
- Waste of MFZB (2004)
- Broadcast to the World (2006)
- Phoenix (2008)
- Panty Raid (2009)
- Get Nice! (2011)
- Call Your Friends (2013)
This band provides examples of:
- A Wild Rapper Appears: Averted, since Ali is actually a part of the band and the rapping is to be expected from their style.
- Anti-Love Song: A few, of different flavors. Particularly "Enemy" and "Here's To You".
- Attractive Bent-Gender: Averted. Oh, dear gods averted.
- Although one or two members of the band have commented on how hot they thought Matty was as a girl.
- The Cover Doesn't Change The Gender: 'Wannabe' uses the word 'lover', which is gender neutral. Girlfriend stays the same, only with ten times the Awesome and twenty times the Funny. Hell, all of Panty Raid is leaves the lyrics the same.
- Dissonant Serenity: "Mental Health". Ali seems crazy through most of the song in the lyrics(About a patient in a mental hospital), and when Matty's lyrics come in he sings 'All I want is to go home, just for a bit...but these padded rooms are the shit!'. Moment of clarity, then back to the nut farm.
- Fun with Acronyms: MFZB means "Motherfucking Zebrahead, Bitches!"
- Good Adultery, Bad Adultery: "Two Wrongs Don't Make a Right, But Three Rights Make a Left" and "Sorry, But Your Friends are Hot" are...interesting cases. In the former, the cheater(The girlfriend) is portrayed as in the wrong, and in the latter the Sympathetic P.O.V. is with the cheater who seems to be a semi-guilty sex addict who wishes he could be faithful.
- Hot-Blooded: Hell Yeah!
- Intercourse with You: "Playmate of the Year" (The song, not the album that the song gives its title too.)
- Long Title: ...There are a few of these. Special awards to "Mike Dexter Is a God, Mike Dexter Is a Role Model, Mike Dexter Is an Asshole".
- No Export for You: Inverted. Many of the albums had Japanese bonus tracks, and the EPs Stupid Fat Americans and Waste Of MFZB were only released in Japan.
- No-Holds-Barred Beatdown: Hoo boy, "Karma Flavored Whiskey." The song is like the soundtrack to beating the shit out of people.
- Power of Friendship: "Strength" is about this.
- Punk Rap
- Rap Rock: As mentioned above, the rock part became emphasized more starting with MFZB. Of course, the combination of rapping and rock instruments has always been their style.
- Recycled IN SPACE!: The cover art of Stupid Fat Americans is the cover art of Playmate of the Year IN JAPAN.
- Sanity Slippage Song: "The Walking Dead" seems to be this.
- Self-Titled Album: "Yellow" was actually a self-titled album initially, but the cover was just bright... yellow.
- Something Something Leonard Bernstein: "Song 10" is very heavily this. To a point that the members of the band say that the lyrics don't exist.
- Song Of Song Titles: "We're Not A Cover Band, We're A Tribute Band". The choruses are all referencing Guitar Hero III song titles.
- Sophisticated as Hell: Ali seems fond of this lately. Brixton makes use of the word "rhetoric," for starters, and several of their songs tackle major social issues by Ali basically screaming a combination of clever analogies and cusswords.
- Take Over the World: The reason for the subject of "Broadcast to the World."