girugamesh’s Best Live Songs All Gathered on One CD

Review

by Amy, posted April 14, 2014

This March, girugamesh dropped their latest release LIVE BEST, a collection of songs pulled largely from girugamesh’s back-catalogue of songs most often played live. LIVE BEST is a powerful album that appropriately flaunts girugamesh’s distinct style and flavor.

Kicking off with “Patchwork” from the band’s 2007 self-titled album, LIVE BEST pulls no punches as it descends into nu-metal tinged chaos. Omae ni sasageru minikui koe” swoops in gloomily and is just as angry as “Patchwork before a siren heralds the beginning of “Dirty Story,” complete with catchy call and response. The drum and bass elements of “Dirty Story are a running theme that can be heard throughout the album. “Vision is no different with its shifting, dance beat opening. For this number there are softer vocals from Satoshi but the guitars are just as relentless as in the previous tracks.

Track 5, “FREAKS,” showcases some of the stronger elements of nu-metal style in girugamesh’s work; creeping in before descending into a downright funky breakdown. It’s all digital beeps and bleeps accompanied by scratching turntables for “Ultimate 4” before “bit crash” swoops in with a bubbling beat and heavy use of harmonics that culminates in a mini drum solo. The bouncy riffs of “Crazy Flag” and the apt use of electronic components in “Mission Code” will get you moving but it’s time to really get that head banging with the high-octane Zantetsu Ken.”

With 19 tracks to the regular editiong, there’s still a large portion of this monster of an album to go. “Suiren” is one of the softer songs on LIVE BEST, but is a far-cry from a ballad. There are no fluffy, dewy-eyed songs to be found here. “Volcano is a previously unreleased track that, true to its name, simmers quietly before exploding; making you want to smash something to pieces. Break Down comes hurtling toward you next but doesn’t quite match up in terms of intensity though “Shadan” is a convulsive jolt to the brain before more turntables and thunderous guitars in “Border. smash!! is another heavy track that blends frantic whispers with roaring vocals. Then, the galloping melody of “Never Ending Story provides a sharp contrast to the penultimate track, evolution, for which an MV was released just recently despite the song’s debut several years ago. Finally, the sanguine and buoyant melody of “Future ends the compilation.

LIVE BEST provides a nice snapshot of what girugamesh can deliver as a live band. Compelling and dynamic from start to end, this collection focuses on the heavier side of their back-catalogue but even now, girugamesh have a distinct sound that cannot be mistaken. LIVE BEST will make a nice addition to a real fan’s collection but could also be a valuable introduction to the band for prospective fans, too.

 Regular Edition

Track List

  1. patchwork
  2. Omae ni sasageru minikui koe
  3. DIRTY STORY
  4. Vision
  5. FREAKS
  6. ULTIMATE 4
  7. bit crash
  8. CRAZY-FLAG
  9. MISSION CODE
  10. Zantetsu Ken
  11. Suiren
  12. volcano
  13. Break Down
  14. Shadan
  15. BORDER
  16. smash!!
  17. Never ending story
  18. evolution
  19. Future

 Limited Edition

Track List

Disc 1:

  1. patchwork
  2. Omae ni sasageru minikui koe
  3. DIRTY STORY
  4. Vision
  5. FREAKS
  6. ULTIMATE 4
  7. bit crash
  8. CRAZY-FLAG
  9. MISSION CODE
  10. Zantetsu Ken
  11. Suiren
  12. volcano
  13. Break Down
  14. Shadan
  15. BORDER
  16. smash!!
  17. Never ending story
  18. evolution

Disc 2: (DVD of MVs)

  1. Owari to mirai
  2. Vermillion
  3. Kowareteiru sekai
  4. Break Down
  5. Alive
  6. Border
  7. crying rain
  8. DIRTY STORY
  9. arrow
  10. COLOR
  11. Inochi no ki
  12. destiny
  13. evolution

Amy happened across Dir en grey on a used computer and became enamored by the aesthetics and androgyny of visual kei. Amy studied Japanese at university, including a year studying abroad in Tokyo. Interests include anime and manga, reading, learning languages, playing guitar, and holding on to the futile dream of one day meeting Johnny Depp. Amy hopes to bring the overseas fans closer to the bands they love by translating material related to them.

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