Japanese shoegaze/metal vets Coaltar of the Deepers return with new version of their 1994 debut
Japanese metal/shoegaze veterans Coaltar of the Deepers (who Hazing Over fka Shin Guard recently covered and namdropped as an influence on their new EP Pestilence) resurfaced in 2018 with the four-song Rabbit EP -- their first new music in over a decade -- and now they have released Revenge of the Visitors, a re-imagining of their classic 1994 debut LP The Visitors From Deepspace and their first full-length release in 14 years. Some background on the new release via their label Needlejuice Records:
Coaltar of the Deepers is one of the most versatile bands of Japan’s shoegazer scene, effortlessly weaving disparate genres into tapestries of psychedelic brilliance. Revenge of the Visitors, their first official release outside of Japan via Needlejuice Records, is a complete re-envisioning of their 1994 debut album. Guitarist, vocalist and songwriter NARASAKI reunites with four original members of the band to update these songs for the 21st century, strengthening their bravura spectacle. Coaltar of the Deepers have always strived to make music that sounds as alien as their silver-helmeted alien guises: sludgy, foreboding metal gives way to surf rock, malevolent growls harmonize with heavenly pop vocals, and hardcore drumwork conjures storms in mellow seas of reverbed guitars. Revenge of the Visitors is a perfect introduction to a legendary band, encapsulating both their humble beginnings and soaring heights.
Whether or not you're already familiar with the 1994 album, this new record is worth checking out; as the label's description says, it's a complete re-envisioning that serves as a perfect introduction to the band. If you don't know the original album, it opens with guttural death metal cover of The Cure's "Killing An Arab" (retitled "Killing Another" and featuring different lyrics on the new version) before going into a strikingly unique blend of shoegaze, power pop, dream pop, alternative rock, sludge metal, and more. It's tempting to compare them to fellow Japanese band Boris, because the ingredients are so similar (and because Boris have covered them too), but the end result is a lot different. Visitors ends up sounding like a cross between Redd Kross, Swervedriver, and Mortician, ranging from pop at its brightest to metal at its most brutal (and working in a "Crazy Train" homage), and the new version really breathes new life into these songs. It feels like an album that should've birthed a heavy shoegaze hit in the '90s (like The Smashing Pumpkins, Hum, Failure, and Deftones all did), and the new recordings sound as fresh as today's heavy shoegaze revival bands like Nothing and Greet Death. (The new version also ups the amount of death metal.) Stream the new version for yourself below.
28 Essential Songs from the Shoegaze / Heavy Crossover
Listen and/or subscribe to our playlist of all 28 songs (with MBV's "Feed Me With Your Kiss" replacing "You Made Me Realise" because the latter isn't on Spotify):