Japanische Kampfhörspiele
Rauchen Und Yoga

Despite a lengthy discography dating back to 1998, Germany’s JaKa never seemed to make the impact you’d expect in the grindcore genre, and I think part of it is they are just a little too experimental for the grindcore crowd, not quite death metal or serious enough for the death metal fans, and simply too heavy for fans of experimentation and off the wall delivery. It short-they are too “German”.

And while it’s this mix that makes JaKa one of the more unique and challenging grindcore bands around, it’s also this mix that hinders them to these ears. The mix of urgent spasms of punkish grind, shrieked vocals, deep growls, programming, off the wall injections and interludes and chunky death metal, while melded into a 16 tracks journey into the unexpected, just never really gels into one complete album, but rather the scattershot grindcore randomness done by really talented mental patients.

It’s like the tape from ‘The Ring’ or like a foreign art house/indie film where the screen is the thoughts of a warbling German man is suddenly interrupted by random images of maggot infested cows heads or ants fucking, and you go “WTF?”.

Still, though, JaKa are undeniably good at this sort of unclassifiable grinding mindfuckery on Rauchen Und Yoga (“Smoking and Yoga”) and though not quite on a mid era Cephalic Carnage like trip, there’s similarities as the band is equally off the wall and unpredictable. Slow, oozing dirges, (“Das Experiment”), tribal programming “Leute Ohne Lust”, electronica (“18-46-53”), catchy rock riffs (“Rauchen Und Yoga”, Bosses Blut”), moments of prolonged weirdness (“Verrat Am Metal”) are littered around the more traditional and expected grindcore spurts ( “Steig Aus”, “Eruiert”, “Wir Haben Nicht Gewusst, Das Es Solche Lager Gibt”) and groove (“Der Angriff Startet”).

But ultimately, listening to JaKa is like listening to a grindcore band with ADD, and you almost have to have ADD or be in a certain state of mind to get it, and that’s while NOT understanding a lick of German. However, they do make for an off the wall grindcore listen, and one that offers up a little something different from the usual grindcore fare.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
February 28th, 2008

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