Japanese Heavy Rock Hits Volume 1
(Southern Lord Records)

Spun: Boris

Japanese Heavy Rock Hits Volume 1

Publication YearIssue Date 

Boris are one of those bands that can seamlessly change genres several times an album -- even midsong -- and not seem like pretentious fucks. They've maintained a steady release and tour schedule, making them Japan's main export since the start of the current recession.

Japanese Heavy Rock Hits is a series of four 7-inch records released through the mighty Southern Lord Records this year. The titles in this series hearken back to their 2002 sludgey juggernaut Heavy Rocks, but with a dash of pop sensibility thrown in. These are truly strange offerings, even for these musical schizophrenics.

Volume 1 starts off with about a minute of drone, which turns into a heavily distorted pop-punk song with dreamy vocals straight out of My Bloody Valentine's Loveless. Of course, they couldn't help but throw in some feedback and soloing courtesy of guitarist Wata, the loudest Japanese woman alive. Side B of Volume 1 is a weird Smashing Pumpkins-esque rock song with heavy guitars and soft vocals over a track of distant space-echoes. This gives way to some power-chord crazy punk rock featuring gang vocals. But it doesn't stop there, obviously. Wata lays down a noise solo that sounds like guitar feedback 100 feet down a hallway from the microphone.

Japanese Heavy Rock Hits Volume 1 shows that Boris just make music. They don't make it for you; they don't make it for themselves. It just comes out that way. ALL GLORY TO THE HYPNODRONE.