LOOKING BACK: Finding out a band you interviewed in high school is still touring some 30+ years later gives me hope.. if they aren't too old for the scene, then neither am I.
[Originally published: Issue #3, circa 1987]
CASBAH is a brilliant thrash/death metal band from Japan. They have released 2 demos that have sold very well. They were offered a five year recording contract by Combat Noise, but turned it down because they were unable to come to exact terms. Their latest release, "Infinite Pain", snows their power, talent, and originality. We had a talk with vocalist Taka Hatori on the future of CASBAH, and the scene in Japan.
Taka Hatori, 23, vocals
Ryo Murayama, 24, guitar
Kouichi Mitani, 19, bass
Takashi Usui, 21, drums
How long has the band been together?
We've been together for 2 years with the current line-up. It's almost four years since the band first began.
How did the band form?
First, it was just for fun - doing covers of IRON MAIDEN, MOTORHEAD, METALLICA and so on. But soon we got bored just doing covers and thus started to write music of our own. That's how it all began. Nothing unusual, you know.
What bands influence you?
I like a lot of bands - SLAYER, METALLICA, CREATOR, IRON MAIDEN, MOTORHEAD, MISFITS, etc...
What messages do you try to give in your songs?
The lyrics are about our ordinary life and its potential pain and harm - which everyone feels close, you know. It's something you can't set aside.
Have you been to the United States yet?
Unfortunately, not yet.
Would you like to tour here?
Yes - I've heard from people in the States about the crazy crowd with so such energy and so such adrenaline! We're very eager to tour there!
What recordings have you done?
We did the "Russian Roulette" EP ($7) and the latest "Infinite Pain" demo ($5).
Are you planning to record an album soon?
No, we don't have any deal at the moment.
Has your style of playing changed any since CASBAH began?
Some people say we've become more hardcore thrash than before, but you know we've never consciously changed our style. We're just playing the music we like. But you have to change - I mean, you always have to try and play something new and original or the band will never make any progress. Bands should become better and more technical and never stay still in one place.
What's your favorite American TV show?
"Sesame Street" and "Bugs Bunny." At least I know two!
What will CASBAH be doing after the upcoming tour?
We might record another demo meant only for record companies and magazines.
Thanx a lot for the interview, and good luck to THREATENING SOCIETY. Keep supporting true metal bands. Believe or bleed! Drop me a line.
CASBAH is definitely one of the best unsigned bands in the world. Give these guys a listen. Got it?