zoo psychology

Catalog #FKR012

Brooklyn, New York’s Post-punk, new-wave quartet, EX MODELS are one of the forerunning champions of The new New York Underground, as recently determined by the most influential and historically sound magazines and newspapers. “Zoo Psychology” is their latest offering; fifteen tracks of wailing and ruling recorded by Martin Bisi (Sonic Youth, Boss Hog, US Maple) and mastered by Fred Kevorkian (White Stripes, Mariah Carey, Squidz.)” “Zoo Psychology” is scheduled for release in May 2003 from frenchkiss records and Southern Distribution. Since their 1998 incarnation, the Ex Models have strived to bring an edge of authenticity back to the NY underground scene. They have done so with humility, humor and respect. Shahin Motia comments on making what is old new again:

“Our record obsesses over a culture of imitation. Things that once derived their meaning and value by being reliable representatives somehow substituted themselves for those relationships, without too many people who aren’t financial analysts being able to tell the difference. At this point we are way beyond reproducing the rock of the past. We’re generating in reverse what looks, sounds like and smells like new rock by means of statistical probability and deeply ingrained formula. Most of our music deals lyrically with the problems of this form, because that’s funnier than writing about one’s own anus constantly. Almost”

Brothers from the same mother & instrument (guitar), Shahin and Shahryay Motia, teamed with bassist Mikhail Masiello and drummer Jake Fielder to form what Alternative Press Magazine coined, “a unique combination of balls and irreverence.” Others wax on about frantic, deconstructed song structures, manic time signatures and delightfully angular guitars. Indeed, EX Models are no strangers to critical acclaim. Oft compared to greats such as Devo, Talking Heads and Shellac, they are already the stuff of a many a Top 10 List.



“New York noise that’s more Sonic Youth than Strokes…a very loud, very strange and playfully destructive album of explosions attached to titles like “Fuck 2 to the Music”... It sounds as if Ex Models are driving through the window of a jewelry store with the emergency brake still on, and in every track they back up and do it again and again and again…making Zoo Psychology a funny and relentless advertisement for atonal living.” -

- Rolling Stone (***)


“The New York renaissance may have turned out some commendably classic-sounding bands, but, as ever, it’s the weirder groups frozen in the city spotlight that turn out to be the most interesting… Big Apple vogue might have led us to Ex Models, but this ain’t no pretty boy fashion thing. This is New York evolution at work.”

- NME (8 of 10)


“Ex Models are four punk kids with Sonic Youth’s disrespect for song structures, taking the piss out of rock, spitting and screeching and trashing everything within reach like cartoon Beastie Boys. Strap yourselves in; this one’s fast and crashing.”

- Bang (***)


“I saw EM live before I heard them on record and…they wanked with such ferocious power that night the jizz-tsunami was unbelievable, the way they just spilt over a stage, cleaned out their pipes, put one end of a dirty rag up their ass, pulled it out their jap’s eye and exorcised their inner filth. Now I’m worried that Zoo Psychology is proving ever so useful around the house…Ex Models are in hock to nothing but their own fizzing synapses, tutored by nothing but the adrenaline and testosterone coursing around their nubile young bodies. Each moment’s capability to either explode or derail itself into silence is seemingly down to whether all four EMs are pulling together or apart, whatever unmediated impulse is buzzing within them…Speed-reading Larry Kramer’s ‘Faggots’ alongside Zoo Psychology helps enormously. Speed helps enormously. Crucially with ZP, you’ve pulled a live one, a feisty little minx/troubled young man who you’ll want out of your life in the morning. For now, take it home and let her beat you senseless/just fuck him till he whimpers.”

- Careless Talk Costs Lives


At last the no-wave revival has produced a band with the genuine weirdness to match the original late-70’s movement and the furious chops to follow such later jazzcore bands as John Zorn’s Naked City… The disc last only 20 minutes, but it would take weeks to unravel all the hypertense riffs and squeals.”

- Blender


“Brooklyn noise-wavers wild out like the Minutemen on chewable Ritalin…excellent.”

- Spin


“Even the experimental-music snobs at MAGNET…get flustered in the face of this 15-track 20-minute blitzkrieg…This is, of course, the desired effect: complete annihilation of your equilibrium. Zoo Psychology does battle with all the mandatory, retro-hip namedrops (The Fall, Gang of Four, you know the drill) and carpet-bombs Melt Banana back to the ‘90s. It sounds like a war against music. It sounds like victory.”

- Magnet


“the Ex Models album is a brain-punk masterclass in stop on a five-pence tightness. 15 songs whizz by in what seems like 15 minutes, leaving you gasping for more of their geek disco skill-ness.”

- Muzik


“The kind of chaotic explosion last heard in the chemistry lab when the technicians accidentally came up with a mini H-bomb.”

- i-D


“[Zoo Psychology] sounds like an extremely horny dog humping your leg…in the right mood, it even makes me want to break stuff.”

- Village Voice


“Art-rock pushed to the extremes of sound and tipped over the edge of insanity. Each choppy outburst of noise makes no sense and yet with each yelp, bass throb and tsunami-like wave of guitar and incessant pounding, everything becomes clear. Confusing, chaotic, and utterly mesmerising.”

- Kerrang! (KKKK)


“seizing and stretching the legacy of CBGB in its heyday: rock that’s smart, skeletal, and recklessly ambitious, eager to provide an antidote to synthetic pop and self-important mainstream rock.”

- The New York Times


“New York calls it a ‘revival’, but it’s actually a cannibal dinner party, a celebration of a musical legacy being devoured… and Ex Models are sitting at the head of the table…So sink your teeth into these atonal, dissonant guitars. Wrap your tongue around these deconstructed song structures. Put that quivering strand of Arto Lindsay’s flesh to your lips and wash it down with a warm glass of James Chance’s blood. Close your eyes and take a bite.”

- Washington Post


“Each and every song is delivered with gusto by the four worryingly manic individuals on stage, as they gurn and shimmy through a set of punked-up, funked-up and totally fucked-up rock ‘n’ roll…Ex Models have enough insanity to have Fab, Julian et al checking into the funny farm on their behalf. They are bizarre, clearly somewhat wrong in the head, and quite, quite brilliant.”

- Logo


“Who likes this album? People tired of trite uninspired plop pop schreeching at them from TV, radio and more. TV…Atonal no wave noise for the betterment of humanity. This is what music is becoming.”

- Stuff


“Ex Models put the ‘ex’ in ‘sex’ with their unique brand of hyperintellectual party-boy panic rock… With tongue planted firmly in cheek, the Models set out on their mission of rock and roll simulation packaging soulful high pitched vocals, call-and-response guitar work, and bouts of audience participation into catchy 90 second bursts suitable for advanced levels of Dance Dance Revolution.”

- San Francisco Bay Guardian



“Zoo Psychology is a very loud, very strange and playfully destructive album…a funny and relentless advertisement for atonal living.”

- Rolling Stone


“It’s perfect music for dancing on a bed of nails.”

- The New York Times


“At last, the No Wave revival has produced a band with genuine weirdness to match the original late-70’s movement…The disc lasts only 20 minutes but it would take weeks to unravel all the hypertense riffs and squeals.”

- Blender


“It sounds like a war against music. It sounds like…victory.

- Magnet


“Ex Models makes the cleanest and most non-metal racket you’re likely to find.”

- Alternative Press


“Guitars orgasm with SonicYouth-like vehemence as yelpy vocals and mauling drums battle it around bass lines that would make Bob Weston jealous.”

- Real Detroit Weekly


“Ex Models take contrapuntal deconstruction to explosive heights by condensing ideas and cramming in as much interesting information possible in as little time as possible.”

- Aquarian Weekly


‘These guys are nuts, and the album makes you want to hit something, but it’s all good.”

- The Sentinel


“Zoo Psychology swims in complex musical ideas, which are in turn presented skeletally enough that, for the most part, you can even actually figure out what the fuck is going on.”