I’ve checked off several things since arriving in Japan but I still have yet to climb Mt Fuji, go to a hot spring, and see Crossfaith. The five piece metalcore outfit hails from the Land of the Rising Sun aka Nippon aka Japan and is one added benefit to finding employment in Japan (aside from receiving steady pay).
After grabbing their 2009 release, The Artificial Theory for the Dramatic Beauty, it became one of my favorite releases of the year, in spite of its incoherent title. Obvious influences from American Metal groups are littered throughout the eight tracks but manages portray enough personal flair that has kept me engaged. The added twist to the standard metalcore formula comes in the form of the programmer (and according to their Facebook page “vision”). If electronica seared into the edges of your heavy music isn’t your cup of musical joe, then this isn’t going to change your mind. But the keys that are placed are done respectfully and you shouldn’t suffer PTSD flashbacks of crabcore power stances. Also, Crossfaith has consistently produced musical interludes that I actually enjoy. It’s easy to skip instrumentals on 90% of albums since they’re filler often times but Crossfaith’s version of the vocal-less jam successfully complements neighboring tracks and they do so consistently.
The same could be said for last year’s full-length follow-up The Dream, The Space. While it may not be as memorable as the first album, songs like “Stars Faded in Slow Motion” and “Promise” give off more of the grandeur that was found in their debut. I will note that songs like the playfully reckless, “Snake Code (Carribean Death Roulette)” provide a much needed respite to the often heavy-handed melodrama that is exhibited in Crossfaith’s music and lyrics. At this time, their Zion EP has been released and “Monolith” is the only track I’ve heard so far. Judging from this sole song, it sounds like these Nihonjin’s mastery of metal and technology continues to progress. (Although, I’m not too aware of the EP’s US availability).
Two weeks after arriving in Japan, Crossfaith played in Tokyo. Sadly, the Yen to Dollar exchange rate is a murderer who ravishes you of a quarter for every dollar you spend. I am now armed and ready with Yen in pocket and will be watching out for the next time Crossfaith plays in their motherland.
You can check Crossfaith on their Facebook to get your international metal groove going.
Album art’s all from crossfaithjapan.com.