There are a lot of special things about vinyl (and cassettes!). One of the most exceptional ones was (is?) the fact that it very usually influenced how the albums were actually put together. Burzum is one of the metal bands that, to our knowledge, put the format to better use in the early 90s, resorting frequently to electronic pieces inspired by Klaus Schulze and the like to play around with the listener’s expectations. How the first side ended and the second began was actually a factor carefully considered by many acts. That effect is, of course, lost with CDs and digital music.
This episode too feels like it has two sides. The first half of the episode is fundamentally different from the second one and yet there are many similarities that can be established. The most prevalent one is that every track chosen was written and performed by bands from Japan.
The title “Great Demon God” and episode picture both reference the Japanese kaijū Daimajin.
Punk and metal didn’t really saw eye to eye back in the day. Promiscuity is rarely the norm among subcultures in the beginning. Motörhead’s “Overkill” is essential if one desires to understand where Britain’s hardcore sound comes from, and NWOBHM in general owns a lot to punk, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that one group mingled a lot with the other. It says little about how scenes came and went and who belonged where.
Then came bands like Hellhammer with their primitive lo-fi black & roll/metal punk (which, truth be told, a lot of metal people hated in the 80s) and Amebix, who united the bridge separating metal and punk. Things are not this linear (they rarely are), but hopefully you get the picture.
Nowadays punks, metalheads, crusties, hard rockers, ravers and the bunch all socialize with one another. And that’s a good thing. As a result there are underground hardcore punks playing lead guitar solos more commonly associated with psychedelic (downright hippie!) rock, and headbangers with a knack for the electronic. It’s a brave new world.
This episode is once again for all you open-minded metal people. Enjoy the noise.