|24th of February, 2021
|Cover Artwork ©
|Shuzo Tajima, 2021
Let’s begin easily by trying to scrutinize the type of music you’re going to encounter on this release. Basically, it’s a light mixture of Post-Hardcore with some elements of Screamo, spiced up with Jazzy patterns as well as Punk and dissonant guitar chords and some slight gazey elements. Too exhausting to read this explanation? Then this music might be an overdose for you.
Emerging from Sapporo, Japan, Carthiefschool are a trio playing an energetic style of music that might be summed up as Post-Hardcore… or Screamo… to a certain extent. With their same-titled debut release, these three guys combine various diverging genre elements constructing a sound that is drastically characteristic. The opener “Mikan” already makes it clear that Carthiefschool is capable of stirring up whatever style they want, setting the beginning with fast hi-hat drums and a dissonant guitar melody that is accompanied by hoarse vocals that switch back and forth between the feel of Screamo or Punk. On the following tracks, Carthiefschool show that they are capable of juggling with all of the genres mentioned above in whatever way they want.
The drums on “Bloodthirsty” switch into a Punk sound, whereas the guitars on this track jump back and forth between staccato dissonant stops and open riffing. Especially the rhythm section is strong on both of those first two tracks and remains present on what is yet to come. On “Doppo” the guitars dive deeper into both a gazey tune as well as a Nu Metal tone in a following section. A personal highlight is the fourth track “House” that intertwines memorable dissonant guitar sections with anthemic vocals, eventually fluently transcending into the Tetris melody out of nowhere and finishing the track. Probably the easiest accessable track on this album is “Kanikousen” that catches with its groovy rhythm that is a classy headbanger with a rather regular Rock guitar and bass sound – of course messed up with a very personal style as well.
Especially when listening closer to the bass on this album that seems to be one of the only “consistent” playstyles not vigorously oscillating, it becomes evident that Carthiefschool consists of very capable musicians. The bass is a strong aspect on this album since it seems to remain in an absolutely amazing Jazz playstyle throughout the entire release, whereas the rest of the musicians play pingpong with numerous genres. Although the bass does not switch as often as the rest of the instruments, the playstyle itself shows that Genki Tsusaka is a damn good bassist, playing complex bass lines all the way. When having realized this, you start listening closer to the rest of the instruments and it definitely crystallizes that Carthiefschool consists of incredibly good artists.
This debut release came via Transduction Records and is available on CD as well as yellow transparent vinyl. Unfortunately, the vinyl version is sold-out already but maybe a 2nd pressing will follow in the future.
The energy that is transported on this music is overwhelming. There is absolutely no need for genre boundaries at any spot here. More preferably, genre elements just float into one another on almost every track. Thus, this debut release constructs a drastically personal sound that is difficult to explain by making use of other bands. This music was not in my comfort zone, however the style that sounded so different from what I knew drove me into listening into this debut release again and again. Definitely a band that you need to have on your scope in the future!
If you want more Carthiefschool, then you are a lucky person because this trio from Sapporo already came across with a new EP in September 2021 – make sure to check out kenjimiyazawa as well in case you’re interested!