North Jersey Notes: Zach Macko

Zack MackoManaging Editor Patrick Slevin introduced me to some pretty interesting music recently. Patrick knows how hard it is to find a good artist to feature each week and he felt this week’s artist was worthy of some coverage, and I felt that he was right! Usually, I have a tendency to overlook acoustic artists, but Zach Macko made that hard to do. After listening to a couple of his songs via myspace, I learned that Zach Macko is just an incredible singer/songwriter. His lyrics tell a story, and are actually soulful, which is exactly what you look for in a great songwriter. His songs “December,” “The Words,” and his most recent single off of his CD Hometown Heroes, “I’ll Get You Back,” really showcase Zach’s talents as a songwriter.

Zach Macko and his partner in crime, Jeff Soriano, grew up in Madison, NJ. This is where they honed in on their skills by playing backyard and basement parties with hopes of one day letting everyone enjoy their music. Zach Macko recently released their third CD, Hometown Heroes, which lyrically is a reflection of Zach Macko’s life the way it is right now! The duo spent the entire summer in the studio writing and recording their tracks for Hometown Heroes with Jeff Soriano producing the whole CD. Many different and cool new musicians were tapped to play on this CD as well! Zach Macko decided to do a lot of experimenting with instrumentation on this CD. For example, he used instruments like trumpets, chimes, and the timpani. Zach claims that he wasn’t this excited about releasing a CD since the band’s first demo.

You can look for Zach Macko to play more shows here in 2009. His music is not bad at all. He even has a cover of Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas” on his myspace page,, which is where you can go to if you want to give Zach Macko a listen or you want to find out where he’s playing next!


My new favorite band for 2009, Borgo Pass from Long Island, whom I featured a few weeks ago, recently sent me a few new tracks to listen to. I have to say, I really f’n love this band’s sound! They remind me of Down crashing into Pantera crashing into B.L.S. The songs that guitarist Tommy Crane sent me, “Dogs Know Better,” “Flesh and Bones,” and a ballad called “Blessed,” really hit the spot! Tommy told me that nobody’s heard these songs on the net yet, and that I was the first, so I was honored, and loved every second of it! Singer James Tamarazzo’s voice sends shivers down your spine, while guitarists Tom Crane and Paul Rosado’s guitar riffs get your teeth gritting for more! It’s crazy! Keep your eyes on these guys this year! Log onto

I just got an e-mail from the boys of Atom Strange, and they seem to have some major plans for 2009! Guitarist Alex Rude and singer Rickeroo Dunn used 2008 to rebuild Atom Strange as they kicked it off in search of a new rhythm section. By April of 2008, they were up and running again with new band members and new songs. Here, in 2009, Atom Strange has already recorded their next full length studio CD and will be releasing it within the next couple of months. Now, according to the e-mail it says that they plan on playing lots of shows all over the ‘country’ in support of their new CD! Well, good luck to them on that! To get more info on Atom Strange, log onto their new website,

And finally, the band known as Factory Syndicate will be filming a video for their Metal rendition of the 1984 hip-hop classic “Rock Box” from rap hall of famers, Run DMC, down at Ding Batz in Clifton, NJ this Saturday night, January 10. For those of you scratching your heads as to who Factory Syndicate is, let me remind you. Factory Syndicate is a new collaboration featuring members of Ten Feet from Murder, the now defunct Split Vision, and The Reckoning. Check them out at and message them if you want in on the video shoot! Only a handful will get in for this show!

That’s all for now! And remember, if your band is from North Jersey and you want some exposure, send your demos and press kits to Arts Weekly, c/o Tim Louie P.O. Box 1140 Little Falls, NJ 0742. No cover bands, please!

Just remember….We’re all in the same boat, so every little bit of exposure counts!