Friday, August 30, 2013

KAMIKABE: The Early Years

The band started off in 2003 with their first show in my basement. Regretfully I have everyone's set from this night on video except for theirs. The earlier songs had a bit more of a screamo influence than probably anyone remembers. The debut 5 song demo featured two vocalists, one of which being the infamous "Dad" of the band. The band's core influence can still easily be recognized as the melodic metalcore that was happening at the moment on Lifeforce Records. Endthisday, The Year Of Our Lord and Beyond The Sixth Seal can be attributed to many of the riffs on this debut demo as well as their sophomore effort, The Eternal Fire EP.

Released just in time on the infamous Preserving Silence Records for their big gig opening up for Zao in 2005 at St Vincent's College, this new EP saw the band move moreso in the direction of moshy metalcore. While still maintaining the Swedish melodies and death metal inspired vocals, this recording saw the band head into a bit less serious direction than where their demo was leading them. Home Alone and Jurassic Park sound clips round out this offering to set off most of the relevant mosh parts on this album. As previously stated, Dad did not partake in this recording as vocal duties were left solely to Mikey Foster. The songs on this album were graced with song titles (as opposed to the demo in which the songs were numbered 1-5) and some clean vocal parts remained present.

The band would later re-record this EP with a new vocalist alongside a more death metal vibe. Each version has their likable qualities. The re-recording serving as a precursor for what was to come in the form of a stronger death metal influence with the original being the final testament to the band's early screamo influences.

Before the recording of their next demo EP, the vocalist who had re-recorded The Eternal Fire EP for the band (later re-released as The Anguish And Onward) had already quit to go full time with his other band, Sabreteeth. This new recording for 2006 would feature the vocal duties of Steve Jarret (previously of Black Hills) and would take the band one step further into their death metal journey. Featuring more gutteral vocals and blast beats than ever before, the band was essentially re-invented with this new effort. This line-up (as with most Kamikabe) would not last for long though as the vocalist would once again leave the band. Several years later, the band would once again re-record the vocals as a re-released offering with Geoff Ficco from Sabreteeth on vocals. This time around, what was previously known as Demo 2006 would be re-released as the Strength To Carrion EP.

At this point in time I think it would be safe to consider the band to be of the technical death metal persuasion. With a new full length offering that has been released on Unique Leader Records, the band continues in its progression towards whatever it is they are progressing towards.

With top notch musicianship always being the driving force of the band, one would wonder why this band has never really left southwestern PA during its earlier incarnation. It amazes me that Lifeforce Records didn't released The Eternal Fire alongside the aforementioned acts ...or that Relapse Records did not wise up enough to release  the Demo 2006 at the same time bands like Brain Drill were blowing up. The band is finally getting the recognition they deserve, however, alongside the release of their debut full length on Unique Leader Records and nationwide tours.


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