ARTISTS

Boris

Boris

The group came together in the early '90s as a four-piece. Each current member had been playing in other acts, and Boris was assembled as a way to have the members interact together in a band atmosphere with their former drummer.

In 1996, Boris released its first full-length, Absolutego, which would quickly lead to a slew of album releases, including collaborations with Japanese experimentalists Merzbow and American-based drone metal guitar duo Sunn O))). Releasing albums with a surprising consistency and frequency would be immensely advantageous to Boris in a variety of ways. The multitude of labels across the globe (from ubiquitous U.S.-based indies Hydrahead and Drag City to Japan's Daymare, Inoxia and Diwphalanx) and the abundance of limited releases produced by the band would allow Boris to the gain the studio experience it had sought. It also found the band pushing the creative visual envelope with its stunning artwork and packaging, primarily directed by Atsuo. Furthermore, it affirmed that Boris was able to morph and mutate into a variety of related styles and moods. And lastly, it also gave the group the much-deserved recognition it needed to break through into the often-fickle American underground music scene.

After befriending Southern Lord label chief Greg Anderson during their first US tour supporting the release of Absolutego, Boris continued to maintain their contacts with the label, sending their latest wares to Anderson and routinely corresponding with him about his involvement in Sunn O))). Soon thereafter, a relationship had developed, and Anderson, after launching his record label, obtained the blessing to release Boris albums for North American consumption.

However, one of the highlights of the Sunn O)))/Boris relationship came to fruition through the recording and subsequent release of the collaborative recording, Altar (2006), which spawned from an experience in which Boris had also performed without the use of a drummer. The release was significant in that it also featured a number of guest collaborators, including vocalist Jesse Sykes, Soundgarden's Kim Thayil and former Melvins bassist Joe Preston.

2008 marks another milestone in the Boris timeline. It finds the act as a four-piece in live formation, with the addition of guitarist Michio Kurihara (with whom the band collaborated in 2006 for its Rainbow release). And it also finds Boris with the release of Smile, its latest full-length effort, which melds the buzzsaw guitar and rhythmic drone-like experimentation of the band's back catalog in a fresh, distinctive, song-oriented presentation unlike any of the band's previous releases.

Rollo

A shocking project produced by Atsuo (Boris), Drifting through the Psych Noise introduction the Acid Folk impressions of Rollo emerge. Started as a duo and released first album “Pinhole”, then became a solo project when “Rollo 3” was recorded. Borh albums were released as limited LP.

Thermo

This duo was formed in the winter of 1997, to be another kind of live-performance-centric, improvised group by Yui KIMIJIMA who played guitar for Gaji, and multi-instrumentalist Toshiaki SUDOH who had been drummer of Melt-Banana till a few months before. On stage, you will see YK at an analog mixing board and equipments, which are connected with the microphones at individual drum to be played by TS. Sans MIDI or samplers, what they need to create music is only the improvisers' attitude where musicians dare to manipulate their 'tool' in an aggressive manner, plus unintentional feedback noise as a godsend. The output is a rhythm-centric noise music, so to speak.

Played in many splendid gigs organized by "cutting-edge" artists such as ROVO, Supercar, Jesus Fever, to name just a few.
> From time to time, a third person appeared on stage as a guest player including Merzbow (electronics), Yoshihide OTOMO (guitar & turn tables), Toshimaru NAKAMURA (no-input mixing board), Yutaka FUKUOKA (voice & FX), Koichi MAKIGAMI (voice), William TOKUHISA (Voice), etc.

The group has started play live again since 2010, after 5 years of silence caused by reluctance to carry their heavy equipment to venues.

Gaji

Singer Yuko HASEGAWA started to play under this name around 1988. Disbanded in October, 2005.

At the moment of the group's first album release, the member was HASEGAWA (on vocals, guitar), NODA (drums), DAMA (bass guitar) and Yui KIMIJIMA (guitar). A legendary live house "Koenji 20000V" in Tokyo was its home. Prior to its next release of maxi-single, the drummer and the bass guitarist have changed to SAKI and UCHIYAMA respectively, and HASEGAWA quit playing guitar to concentrate her creativity to sing with her throat. After this the group began to explore poli-rhythmic approaches and released a self-titled maxi-single and second full album "focus | fluid | daub" from ZK records. The bass guitarist UCHIYAMA left the group shortly after then, consequently ex-Panic Smile TORIIMEN joined in.

The group kept seeking more dynamic composition and performance, influenced by its peer bands such as Kirihito in Tokyo, Music Start Against Young Assault and Jesus Fever in Kyoto, to name a few. The third album "ten to ten past ten" was released from Lee V Cleef as a product of this approach, when the group had to face again the resignation of bass guitar player. What the successor MASUYOSHI brought to the group was huge. Through his ability to control the fundamental of their music, achieved was the last album "9pm at gfm" (Inoxia), which was recorded in the live session without audience and without a pause, using a binaural recording technique. This attempt adopted by KIMIJIMA can be deemed to successfully capture the dynamics and beauty of the group at the peak period. The last two albums gained highly favorable reviews from the influential "Pitchfork Media".

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