Tue. Feb 27th, 2024

Sakevi Yokoyama, the fabled vocalist in Japanese hardcore punk and metallic band G.I.S.M., has died. Beast Arts Worldwide, his distribution firm for artwork, merch, and information, confirmed right now (September 2) that he “handed away peacefully” on August 24. 

In 1981, Shigehisa “Sakevi” Yokoyama shaped G.I.S.M. in Tokyo with the late guitarist Randy Uchida, bassist Kannon “Cloudy” Masuo, and drummer Tohru “Monamour” Hiroshima. The acronym remained the identical all through the band’s historical past, although the abbreviation represented a number of names, together with God within the Schizoid Thoughts, Guerrilla Incendiary Sabotage Mutineer, Basic Imperialism Social Homicide, Gnostic Idiosyncrasy Sonic Militant, and Man Particular person Social Imply. 

Their debut album, 1983’s Detestation, showcased a band at a midpoint between hardcore punk and metallic. Sakevi’s guttural growl helped outline the band and album’s sound. Recorded at a twin venue and recording studio known as Our Home, the album was self-produced and featured engineering assist from Konishi Koji (who additionally labored with Aburadako, the Comes, and others). Detestation was one of many first Japanese hardcore albums to be launched. It might later turn out to be an underground favourite in American punk circles following protection in Most Rocknroll and Thrasher, with artists like Poison Concept and Integrity championing the band. 

That following 12 months, G.I.S.M. had been included on the Worldwide P.E.A.C.E. Profit Compilation, later retitled P.E.A.C.E./Conflict in 1997. The file famously gathered 55 hardcore bands from around the globe—together with Useless Kennedys, Crass, Subhumans, Butthole Surfers, D.R.I., Battle, Execute, and Mob 47, amongst others—to share anarcho or left-leaning songs of peace, with all proceeds going to anti-nuclear organizations. Most Rocknroll contributed a 72-page insert about political demonstrations, imperialism, radiation, and different topics. The compilation’s launch in 1984 meant G.I.S.M. had been one of many first Japanese punk bands to be distributed broadly in america.

G.I.S.M. launched three albums total, following up Detestation with 1987’s Navy Affairs Neurotic (M.A.N.) and 1998’s SoniCRIME Remedy. Sakevi created the art work for every one, his graphic model serving to their releases stand out from these by different punk bands. Drawing affect from the collage-based, anarcho-punk aesthetic popularized by Crass, Sakevi additional pushed his artwork into an edgier territory supposed to shock viewers, incorporating genitalia, mutated faces, and battle imagery. When Relapse Data reissued the band’s first two albums over the previous three years, they lined the swastika prominently featured on Detestation’s cowl with an obi strip.

At reveals, Sakevi was notoriously confrontational, as soon as going as far as to shoot a flamethrower straight into the group with no warning. G.I.S.M. shrouded themselves in thriller, and that attract solely grew because of rumors and concrete legends about Sakevi himself, which positioned him as a violent and critical man. A handful are handled as info amongst followers—resorting to intimidation to cease the unfold of bootleg G.I.S.M. information and merch, allegedly threatening to kill a clerk at a file store for promoting unofficial shirts—regardless of little to no proof for the tales. Others, like rumors of him stabbing an viewers member for taking his {photograph}, had been by no means verified past their tall story standing, however these tales performed a job in dramatizing G.I.S.M.’s mystique overseas.

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