When I saw Gendo Ikari in Glasgow in 2017, I was impressed with the band’s extremity and playing ability, and now in 2023 the band has a self-released full-length, Rokubungi, with which the band shows it’s just as impressive on album as live.
Some hardcore and grindcore bands from the U.K. are to my ears extreme in a way that I can’t quite put my finger on. It’s like they’ll accept breaking a bone or getting a tooth knocked out if that means they put on a great set. Not literally or necessarily, but it’s that kind of musical-performance-as-rugby-match and throwing-back-pints-before-during-and-after that I get from a few of these U.K. bands (and maybe some bands from Australia) that makes them special, for lack of a better word.
Gendo Ikari is one of those bands. While the guys wear their Neon Genesis Evangelion fandom on their sleeves, which might make them nerds in some way, that’s cool because their album rips. The 15 songs go here, there, and everywhere; starting, backing up, and stopping; with absurd-sounding riffs and structures; but all the while without sounding silly, which is a difficult thing to pull off. You have to be tight and have fast hands in order to play this kind of material. The band is of the Japanische Kampfhörspiele type but much more grindcore than metal and with much more of a Discordance Axis influence.
The band released a couple of videos for Rokubungi, starting with “Despise” …
… and then album opener “Abhorrent”:
Rokubungi is out now on CD and digital from Bandcamp.