Tuesday, April 15, 2008
NEW GAUZE= PRANK LP VERSION ON THE WAY!!!
Prank is honored and stoked to announce that PRANK 100 will be the vinyl version of GAUZE 's latest LP released in Japan on CD by XXX Records, Who keep all of Gauze's catalog in print on CD in Japan. (Try Record shop Base for ordering these from overseas and Armageddon Shop has also been importing copies) .
The 12" been mastered by George Horn to vinyl at 45 RPM and should sound huge as it's a short, to the point record, ten songs clocking in at a little over 13 minutes. The initial first press will be 1,000 copies and hopefully will be released in May or June.
As a fan, Gauze have been one of my favorite bands since the 1980's and it was honor enough to assist with their 1996 US tour, which was one of the crucial turning points -along with tours by Assfort, Gaia and Smash Your Face and others in American acceptance and then fanaticism over Japanese hardcore. Gauze's 7" EP on Prank has continued to be a steady part of the prank catalog, and for many people in the US and Europe, one of the few records they can find and their introduction to the band.
I spent years in Alabama listening to their third LP over and over- a record that was taped onto cassette, and then by default glued to my car's stereo for the better part of a year or longer in the early 1990's, this new record is quickly becoming glued to my home and car's stereo as well with it's psychotic intensity. There's been low grade MP3's of this floating around from almost the moment this was released, but they compress a record that was already really compressed in recording and miss a lot of the impact of the manic drumming that drives the entire record. It's case in point of how people who JUST are downloading and listening to mp3 are often getting a signifigantly diminished musical experience.
The recording of this new LP is completely lo-fi and raw, but the thing I like most about it, in Gauze's way of simplicity is there is no trickery, there is no reliance on low end to accomplish brutality, the speed, the music captured in a simple , straight forward recording speaks for itself. There's been a lot of records that prank has released, (past, present, future )where the band thickens the recording in mixing, and the overall effect is it slows the record down. This might, ironically be an after effect of what was "the prank sound" of low end bashing and down tuning, but the point stated here is that's not the only way you accomplish brutality as the songs here are completely, once again, jaw dropping in intensity ( especially tracks 2-4, 6,7) .
Since Japan has largely abandoned Vinyl buying- or at least on the massive scale it was in the 1990's , were it was virtually propping up entire labels and bands, there were no plans to release this on 12" vinyl, which did not sit welll with us at the prank office!!! So we worked things out to release this here. It will also reduce the cost for people of the high expense of importing from Japan, and hopefully make the music more broadly available. We do plan on keeping this release available.
27 years on, Gauze probably can stake claim to be the World's greatest and longest standing, continuously playing hardcore band in the world from the 1980's. They still play monthly in Tokyo to packed live houses, and We've tried to convince them to return to the US, though the 1996 tour was marked with difficulty (Out of four shows, one was cancelled in San Francisco when some dork swung on the sprinkler pipes and yanked them loose, flooding the venue...), One was spottily attended ( In Chicago), and two were packed full. This was before the manic interest in Japanese hardcore, and before the internet was used as a tool to keep people informed. We'll keep working on convincing them to return, but meanwhile there's a virtual feast of Gauze live shows on You Tube