TAKASHI formed in 1982 in New York City, New York with vocalist Danny Stanton, guitar duo Craig Kory and Bob Simonson with rhythm section Tom Cangemi on bass and drummer Chuck Kory. The band would quickly become a familiar name in the local hard rock/heavy metal circuit. In 1983 New York’s now legendary Mongol Horde Records released a handful of EPs from bands such as THOR and VIRGIN STEELE, and like those bands the label would go down in cult metal history for its contribution to the U.S. metal scene – and it all started with TAKASHI ‘Kamikaze Killers’.
The release of ‘Kamikaze Killers’ would help the band’s name to grow and as their popularity increased the band would land supporting slots for acts like TWISTED SISTER and ANTHRAX. Takashi eventually would disappear like almost all things of the eighties did. Now after 33 years TAKASHI’s classic EP ‘Kamikaze Killers’ is finally issued for the first time ever on CD.
The release includes the original EP tracks ‘Strangler’, ‘Kamikaze’, ‘Mad Max’, ‘Playboy Girls’. Additional tracks include: ‘Kill or Be Killed’ and ‘Live to Rock’, among others. All songs were re-mastered by Jamie King at The Basement Studios. An eight page booklet including lyrics, essay, and full of flyers and never before seen pictures add to this first time ever CD release.
TAKASHI’s ‘Kamikaze Killers’ stands head and shoulders above so many of its peers that it’s almost cruel to name names. The simple fact is that apart from some of the 80’s heavy metal heroes we all know only a few of the underground movement were actually any good, regardless of how important the movement was in the history of hard rock/heavy metal.
And the fact is that on the strength of this album, TAKASHI were one of the few. This molten slab of riff infused metal is unkempt and raucous in its delivery, oozing passionate zeal with a band experienced enough to know what they were doing while still being young enough to have that irreplaceable, one-off youthful bravado at the opening possibilities.
‘Kamikaze Killers’ is a collection of heads down numbers. The production is simple and traditional as one would expect of the albums vintage. The cover art is minimalist and the entire package is understated – except for the music!
Some of TAKASHI’s best songs are on this album, “Strangler”, “Mad Max” and the title track “Kamikaze” itself. All are great metal songs that race along with purity of mission. And the reason this album hangs together so well is that even though some of the other songs are additions to the original EP, they all meld together well. Every song sounds like it belongs here. That one of the quintessential underground Heavy Metal records of all time has been reissued with a smattering of bonus cuts is damn good.
This recording is full of mini metal masterpieces, and is yet another of TAKASHI’s odes to legions of head-banging fans. The mere aggressive, no-holds-barred title indicates that here was a group that wore their metal colors with pride at a time when many of their peers were trying to distance themselves from that label.
You know those old school heavy metal records your father would play back in the day? The ones with attitude, the ones that had a personality of their own…this is one of those records. With gut-busting riffs, inspiring solos, and clockwork drumming it will be near impossible to forget the likes of TAKASHI.
‘Kamikaze Killers’ is worth a listen. Its classic, it’s powerful and it’s loud. This one is a true classic of the 80’s metal period and should be in your collection next to your jean jacket. Dig it!