232

Yakuza: Way Of The Dead

Mark Corroto By

Sign in to view read count
The modern use of the Japanese word “Yakuza” refers to organized crime or mafia. I’m quite sure the Chicago jazzcore/avant metal/psychedelia band Yakuza is actually referring the ancient usage of the word, which is “the crazy ones.”

Yakuza’s music picks up where Naked City, Faith No More, and Painkiller left off. They make music where speed metal and Sun Ra converge. Think Soundgarden with real musicians or a punk version of Hank Mobley.

The Way Of The Dead opens with a bell and some Tibetan throat singing before the drummer rumbles intro to a saxophone and crunchy guitar thrash. Then you know nothing about this disc can be pigeonholed or categorized.

Yakuza mixes punk and free jazz without allegiance to either community. They take bits and pieces from Eastern Music, and post-rock/jazz bands like Tortoise and Radiohead only to spin them into time-shifting hardcore sounds. Singer Bruce Lamont coughs out lyrics, then picks up his saxophone to duel with Chicago reedsman Ken Vandermark. Just when you think you’ve got them figured out, they lay a 43-minute spaced out groove piece on you.

Yakuza certainly are the crazy ones.


Track Listing: Vergasso; Miami Device; Yama; Signal 2.42; T.M.S.; Chicago Typewriter; Obscurity; 01000011110011.

Personnel: James Staffel

Title: Way Of The Dead | Year Released: 2003 | Record Label: Century Media


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Another North CD/LP/Track Review Another North
by Roger Farbey
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Gledalec CD/LP/Track Review Gledalec
by John Sharpe
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Flux Reflux CD/LP/Track Review Flux Reflux
by Glenn Astarita
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Christmas With Champian CD/LP/Track Review Christmas With Champian
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: October 19, 2017
Read Harmony of Difference CD/LP/Track Review Harmony of Difference
by Phil Barnes
Published: October 18, 2017
Read No Answer CD/LP/Track Review No Answer
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 18, 2017
Read "The Drive" CD/LP/Track Review The Drive
by Roger Farbey
Published: November 16, 2016
Read "Happy Song" CD/LP/Track Review Happy Song
by Geno Thackara
Published: October 5, 2017
Read "Better By Far" CD/LP/Track Review Better By Far
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: April 17, 2017
Read "Manhattan EP" CD/LP/Track Review Manhattan EP
by Troy Dostert
Published: March 2, 2017
Read "A Night Walking Through Mirrors" CD/LP/Track Review A Night Walking Through Mirrors
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 11, 2017
Read "The Attic" CD/LP/Track Review The Attic
by John Sharpe
Published: July 24, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.