Tuesday, December 1, 2009

V/A - TOKYO DEAD LINE LP (1989)

Various Artists
TOKYO DEAD LINE (1989)


Tracklisting:


Side A
VISION 99 - Henley Broken
MOTHER GOOSE - Visitor
ROSEN KREUZ - Undead Dance
L-TRANS - Run³

Side B
WALT FALL - 銀河 [Ginga]
THE NIRVANA - The Sence Of Sight
SCARLET BLISS - Holding Howling
NEUROTIC DOLL - Grolia

Released: 1989
Label: Kadash Records
Catalogue number: KD-001
Format: LP

Lenght: 40:38
Bitrate: 320 kbps

An excellent compilation from the late eighties courtesy of Kadash Records, yet another one of those labels that only ever released one record (as far as I know) before fading into obscurity.

The schizophrenic "Henley Broken" by VISION 99 kicks off the omnibus - this weirdo-masterpiece of a rocker elicits all kinds of impressions; spanning from "what the fuck?" to "fuck yeah" and most anything inbetween. Utterly confusing upon the first listen or two but given time and a couple of listens, I think you'll find this thing growing on you like some weird and wonderful fungal infection of the pleasure centre of the brain. In particular take note of the wonderfully melancholic section that unexpectedly bursts forth at around 4:12. Sadly, this tune is one of only two tracks (the other one being the even more freaked out "Crescendo" off of the "Operation Z"-compilation) ever put out by this severely under-recorded band.

MOTHER GOOSE's "Visitor", is a more straightahead affair ...although the androgynous vocals of lead singer EIICHIRO may take some getting used to. This track was later re-recorded as "Xeno" for the bands full-lenght LP, but the version present here is much better - harder, harsher and faster! Great stuff!

Next up "Undead Dance" - the first recorded instance of none others than the mighty ROSEN KREUZ. A monumentally odd track, this jagged and twisted tune is filled to the brim with tribal drum-pounding, shrieking guitars, blurts of synthesizer and blood-curling screams. Also present is original singer YUDA and original drummer SHIRAKI. As you might recall, J.P. Hal of THE OTHERSIDE and SPEED-iD-fame drummed on ROSEN KREUZ' debut album "C.O.L.D 91001".

More of a mood piece than something you'd hum along to, "Undead Dance" nevertheless serves as a blue-print of that peculiar kind of electronic kind-of-goth that ROSEN KREUZ were to develop for their first album (and discard for their subsequent ...but that's another story).

Likewise, L-TRANS darkened new wave track "Run³" is also different from the rest of their output, which is of a much more perversely twisted and dark sort (case in point: "Hard Rocks" - an acid, acrid nightmare of a mini-album!). Clocking in at an impressive 7:20, this churning semi-psychedelic downer is comparable to a bad trip of LSD on the heights of the Himalayas - all is cold, vast and freaked out.

The mood shifts abruptly on the flipside of this record with WALT FALL's jazzy "Ginga". After a LENGHTY pots-and-pans, clank-a-thon introduction, we're in for a swinging trip through the milky way with this mystery group (featuring members from DIP THE FLAG, among others). Quite addictive, although these groovy equilibrists are perchance a little out of place with the rest of the gloomy freaks of this platter.

Continuing the hitherto more mellow manner of the B-side is THE NIRVANA (not to be confused with a certain Seattle band) with their "The Sence of Sight" - an alternative rock tune centered around some simple but very nice guitarwork. At times almost too easily digested and borderline cringeworthy, getting to this point of the record has nevertheless always been a pleasure for me (although a bit of a guilty one). Apart from being featured here, the only other appearance of THE NIRVANA that I know of is on the very rare "Tokyo Acid Punks" VHS alongside EX-ANS among others.

Another one of those bands that seems to have recorded only one single track is SCARLET BLISS' , whose super-agressive "Holding Howling" effectively rips apart the nice and comfy atmosphere built up by WALT FALL and THE NIRVANA. Drenched in ultra-flangered guitars, this short explosion of a tune mainly comes and goes as a punch to the ears; unfortunately being a little bit too indistinct to leave much of a lasting impression.

Concluding the album is the mighties of conclusions - the majestic "Grolia" by the much talked about but seldom heard NEUROTIC DOLL (whose sole LP "Reveal" has proven to be surprisingly elusive). Gloriously overblown in lenght, atmosphere and complexity; no amount of my typing-diarrhea can come close to describe the wuthering heights of this mighty goth opus. Just listen to it yourselves and prepare to get charmed. As a sidenote, I do think that the song is actually meant to be called "Gloria" rather than "Grolia" (although the title of "Grolia" provides a hilarious contrast to the super-romantic mood of the tune; evoking images of cavewomen rather than victorian maidens pining away in dark castle towers) - however, seeing as both sleeve and label (and Discogs) lists the song as "Grolia" I saw it best fit to keep it that way for these rips.

What else to say? Enjoy!

6 comments:

Abraxas80 said...

Great review. thanks for all

Anonymous said...

Thank you for this! :)

zytroop said...

I love the L-TRANS track

Ikebukuro said...

tank's!!! I love Neurotic Doll

wowa said...

More Rosen Kreuz pls!!

ando-kun said...

Whoa, thank you! Now I'm curious!