Wednesday 8 January 2020

REVIEW: Shinji Kazama, "Shinji Kazama"

By: Peter Morsellino

Album Type: EP
Date Released: 04/01/2020
Label: Independent

“Shinji Kazama” DD track listing:

1). Wot I Like
2). I’m Enough
3). Blackfoot
4). Future99Corridor
5). Whorls of Hydrilla

The Review:

There are few places I have travelled to that I dislike more than Western NY. Granted, these experiences are mainly based on personal strife’s, sports team preference, and anecdotes about weather that I have graciously never been subjected to; but I am a grown man and as such am entitled to hold irrational grudges at my own discretion.

But in the interest of fairness, despite personal grievances, I would be remiss if I did not point out that the good city of Rochester seems to breed some of the best doom and stoner rock in the state. From the bluesy acid jams of King Buffalo, to the earth rattling gloom of Orodruin, there just must be something in the water. Today, I am very glad to add to that list: Shinji Kazama.

The self titled release from these spaced out fuzzheads is stoner rock at its absolute finest. The jams are smooth enough to make you move but complex enough to keep you thinking. We're not looking at potheads with displaced aggression here, folks. This is a finely tuned psych-metal machine. This is Orange Goblin goes to art school, in the best possible way. The jams are fresh and keep the listener engaged, without once approaching the realm of overstaying their welcome. Honestly, I was two tracks into this album before I realized this was an instrumental band.

With guitars evoking violin like sustain, seismic shifting bass lines and drums expertly straddling the line between jazzy technicality and just plain heavy as hell, this band has it all.  Reminiscent of Pink Floyd just as much as Mastodon and perfectly blended at that. Stand out track "I'm Enough" opens with riffage that could wake the dead before gliding seamlessly into a middle section that would fit perfectly in with the best of the summer festival jam rockers.

This is a band to keep an eye on, and if you are anywhere near the area, Rochester is worth the visit if only for a taste of what the finest in Stoner Metal has to offer. I'll be sparking up to these guys tonight, and I highly recommend doing the same.

“Shinji Kazama” is available HERE

Band info: bandcamp || facebook