Performance Of War [Bootleg]

Gism - Performance Of War (Bootleg) ©1988 Performance Corps.
1. Endless Blockades For The Pussyfooter
2. Death Agonies And Screams
3. A.B.C. Weapons
4. Nih Nightmare
5. Documment One
6. (Tere Their) Syphilitic Vaginas To Pieces
7. Nuclear Armed Hogs
8. Anthem
9. Incest-Gash-Bite-Snatch-Aahb
10. Death Exclamations
11. Fire
12. Still Alive
13. Nervous Corps
14. G.I.S.M.
15. Aahb (G.I.S.M. Stereo Split)
16. Choke (G.I.S.M. Stereo Split)
17. Shoot To Kill
18. Endless Blockades (alt. Version)
19. Punks Is Hippies (unreleased)
20. Seeds Rock N' Roll
21. N.S.B.

Before I say anything else, I'd like to point out that this is probably a bootleg. I don't think GISM has had any "official" releases in close to ten years. It's really great to see that many independent punk and hardcore labels are keeping a lot of the classic records in print with releases like this.

Anyway, for those that aren't "in the know", GISM is one of Japan's first and most infamous hardcore bands. This CD compiles the Detestation 12", the tracks that were on the Outsider, Great Punk Hits, Hardcore Unlawful Assembly and Punx compilations, a few unreleased tracks, and some tracks from the members' post-GISM projects. This C contains pretty much everything they recorded before extremely rare M.A.N. LP (which I have still not heard).

The Detestation 12" (the first eight tracks on here), recorded in 1982, remains to this day one of the most unique hardcore records of all time. Indeed, even the many bands that claim to be influenced by GISM (such as Poison Idea, to give just one example) haven't recorded anything that is even close to as completely fucked up and bizarre as this record is. Imagine a cross between early hardcore, early Motorhead, and Iron Maiden. Yes, I'm serious. They throw in some melodic leads and solos in addition to the hardcore chaos and it works beautifully! GISM were probably one of the first hardcore bands to have a significant metal influence. The vocalist shouts and growls like a deranged lunatic, which helps a lot in adding to the "insane" feel of the music. Rumor has it that he was actually somewhat mentally disturbed, which is actually not at all hard to believe at all once you hear the music (though it probably isn't hard to believe by looking at the song titles either). This record has become one of my absolute favorite hardcore records since acquiring this cd.

Unfortunately, the other tracks on the CD aren't quite as enjoyable. Not because the music isn't great (far from it, actually), but because the records the tracks were taken from were obviously played about one thousand too many times, making the music sound extremely raw and noisy, and hard to make out at times. However, this is hardly the fault of the label, as the compilations were released in the early-to-mid 80s, and I doubt they had more than one pressing each. I highly doubt there are any completely brand new, unused copies still floating around. Anyway, from what I can make out, those tracks sound a lot more like straightforward aggressive hardcore than the Detestation LP, and aren't quite as metal-influenced. It's still great music, I just wish I could hear it a little better.

I highly recommend this release (and this band) to anyone that is at all interested in hardcore in general. Now if only someone would reissue that second LP.

Review by Mark Pennington

Review date: 02/2003

Back to top