Gate of Doom
In our anglo-centric world we sometimes forget grind is not just a transatlantic affair. These rising stars from the land of the rising sun have been name checked by Napalm Death (who covered a trio of their early tunes for a BBC session) and Discordance Axis.
These sons of bitches (who actually named themselves Sabotage Organized Barbarian) baked up a musical Twinkie with a fluffy, golden grind cake on the outside with sweet dollops of crossover-style thrashcore on the inside.
Their earlier albums, Where’s the Truth and the Engrish-titled Don’t Be Swindle, remain impossible to find, but Gate of Doom, with classic Ed Repka art, and its follow up are back in print courtesy of Toy’s Factory, securing at least a portion of the band’s immense legacy.
No less a luminary than Lee Dorian has said Napalm Death even swiped some of that band’s early riffs while writing for the immortal From Enslavement to Obliteration. Discordance Axis vocalist Jon Chang has also listed Gate of Doom as one of the bands that inspired the New Jersey grindsters’ writing.
Frontman Yoshitomo “Tottsuan” Suzuki recorded one more album with the band, Vicious World in 1994, but the next year he killed himself by jumping in front of a train.
The band soldiered on, recruiting grindcore royalty Dorian, Kevin Sharp and Shane Embury to plug lineup holes from time to time. However, later albums increasingly shed the grind aspects in favor of experimental hardcore.
Despite the loss of Suzuki and the band’s stylistic pilgrimage, S.O.B. already marked their spots as the gatekeepers of grindcore.