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    Vajra – Sichisiki

    Vajra - Sichisiki

    “This album, in contrast to the previous two, features Mikami only on vocals. The absence of his rhythm guitar totally alters the dynamic of the group, moving the focus to Haino’s guitar and Ishizuka’s martial, textured drumming. Anguished vocals, eruptions of black fire from Haino, drifting deep space echoscapes, stumbling blues. Vajra have a sound totally unlike any other group’s—and as a result they are an unsettling, weird listen.”—Alan Cummings

    A maniacal laugh from Mikami Kan abruptly starts an explosively short steamroll of advanced speedcore noise from Keiji Haino on guitar and Toshiaki Ishizuka on drums. Thus begins the third album–which, for the first time, is divided up into nine selections–from this Tokyo powerhouse called Vajra. Many of the eight tracks that follow delve into somewhat more traditional approaches to rock form, yet are still skewed with plenty of off-kilter feedback riffs; playful vocals; dry, angular guitar; screeching vocals and slowly-plodding, human-ass, distorted dirge rock. The set is closed out with a half-minute noise distortion cloud.

    Once again, my favorite moment is track five, in which Haino copyrights another puff of shimmering guitar waft accented by Mikami’s vocal command; ranging from nice, gentle singing to squeaking abstractions; and appropriate seaside washes from Ishizuka. The cover artwork consists of a matte black background with only the title scrawled across the front in Japanese and purple clouds hovering about inside the booklet.

    Label: PSF Catalog Number: PSFD-88 Format: CD Packaging: Jewel case Tracks: 9 Total Time: 35:00 Country: Japan Released: 1997 Related Artists: Fushitsusha, Keiji Haino More: Forced Exposure, Official, Poison Pie, Wikipedia

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