Leucine Zipper & the Zinc Fingers Drop Science

Just when it seemed like it’s been a while since Georgia boasted a silly costumed band beating a concept into the clay, a la Servotron or Man or Astro-Man?, along comes Leucine Zipper and the Zinc Fingers. Their shtick, as it were, is that they’re a genetically modified band created in a laboratory. And as if the second song on their debut CD Atomic Anarchy, “We’re a Science Band,” didn’t make it clear enough, their songs are all sort of about science, and science accessories.

But they sure don’t sound like they were cooked up in a sterile lab. Nah, they kick it out like they’ve spent years honing their three chords in garages and basements like all good bands do, with an uncomplicated, Ramones-worthy, get in/get out, old school punk style. Guitarist/vocalist Jennifer Leavey (Leucine Zipper) is also 1/3 of the still-playing-once-a-year-or-so Catfight!, and despite the subject matter, it’s impossible to not hear Catfight! coming through strong in her songs here, particularly the opener “GMO Rock.” Joe Mendelson helms the other originals, which tend to trend a little rougher. They also cleverly sci-ify da bruddas’ “I Want You Around” and Meat Puppets’ “Lake of Fire,” and straight-up cover Alice Cooper’s “Clones” and “Amoeba” by The Adolescents. (Hey Leucine, if you’re on the hunt for another appropriate song to add to your setlist, consider “Single Cell” by Luigi!) And if all the labcoat jargon in the lyrics goes a little over your head, the CD booklet acts as a mini-textbook, with handy, succinct explanations and illustrations.

Leucine and her test tube boys will drop their science live this month at the Star Bar (Oct 6) and at Under the Couch (Oct. 13), the latter of which is an all-ages venue on the campus of Georgia Tech, which all of the Zinc Fingers either attended or are currently employed by.

Photo by Jim Stacy.