Mishal Zeera
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Mishal Zeera

Band Alternative Rock

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Music

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"One-man Travelling Band"

Who: One-man traveling band.

Sounds like: Worldly rock and pop.

During this year’s SXSW festival in Austin, TX, Mishal Zeera and his touring drummer stopped me on Red River and 7th Street to ask for directions to the Beauty Bar. And although I didn’t know the answer, this CD was luckily dropped into my hand. Zeera’s musical background is a fascinating one, hailing from the Middle-East and stopping through the West Coast of Canada and the U.S. before calling New York (and sometimes London) his home. This world-versatility reflects on Bunker Pets, a full-length of originals that calls to mind the quirkiness of David Bowie, assertiveness of Jethro Tull, and even the spontaneity of The White Stripes (especially on "Cuckold"). "Oh Well" has the musical makings of a solid anthem, somewhat reminiscent of early-’90s rock, while "The Party" echoes surf guitar riffs from the likes of The Ventures or Dick Dale. Never a dull moment on this one.
-Andrea Rizzo - Portfolio Weekly


Discography

Bunker Pets (LP) May 2006

Photos

Feeling a bit camera shy

Bio

Mishal Zeera comes from a desert industrial island in the Middle East. He grew up a foreigner in his own land. The often paralysing boredom kept him at the music and away from the hookah pipes and cheap heroin.

Misguidedly relocating and playing in experimental proto-retro bands in Montreal and LA, he eventually ended up in London where he went to art school. Performing to London crowds with the band "Kalki", he developed his songwriting and production skill. BBC1 took a song of his and put it on what was the John Peel show (RIP). John Peel died the week he recieved Mishal's demo, so Huw Stephens had to play it. Uncomfortable feelings were had all around, but it was still somewhat decidedly cool.

Comparisons with The Doors, the Kinks and David Bowie have often been made since the early days in London. Mishal's songs lend themselves equally to stripped-down acoustic/piano sets as to high-gain performances. Songs like "Oh Well" (featured on Jonathan Clarkes "Out of the Box" show on 104.3FM) pummel you with a heavy hooky chorus, while caressing you with an intimate, fragile verse. "Lady Catherine" ushers in welcome nostalgia for Paint It Black era Stones. "The Graduate" is a stark and vulnerable confession, with a nod to Mick Ronson-era Bowie. Funnily enough, it was actually written during Mishal's graduation ceremony (held 100 yards away from his apartment) while Mishal was nursing a fearsome hangover.

Playing on an outdoors stage at Austin, Texas's SXSW festival one fine sunny afternoon, a mini-epiphany was had... but is now... forgotten.