The five years from 1987 to 1992 was a profoundly pivotal period in time for Japanese Industrial/Noise music. Merzbow would be breaking through to international markets, performing in the USSR and United States, and then switching from analog to digital production. Kazuyuki Kishino (KK.Null) would start introducing Noise to prog-rock and hardcore audiences via Zeni Geva, and later tour with Sonic Youth. Fumio Kosakai began releasing records as part of Incapacitants in ’89 and form C.C.C.C. with bondage pornstar Mayuko Hino. Masonna was smashing his first pieces of gear on stage. And in the midst of it all, from the frenetic distorted frequencies to the hardcore punk rock guitars riffs of the aforementioned artists, Dissecting Table was the alchemical transmutation of the full range of what was going on in that time period. Consisting of two recorded live performances, this double disc relic titled “Industrial Document 1988/91” from Steinklang Industries documents a seminal moment in Ichiro Tsuji’s prolific nihilistic project and the sub-genre of Death Industrial.
The first performance, at the Explosion disco on April 2, 1988, takes place a year after the band’s first full length release, “Ultra Point Of Intersection Exist”, and the second performance, recorded at the renown Koenji 20000V on November 3, 1991, a year after their band’s classic sophomore album, “Between Life And Death”. The first 1988 performance starts off with 3 tracks from Dissecting Table’s very first EP, “Ultimate Psychological Description”, a maniacal set of panic inducing metallic percussion high pitched synth noise, and blistering electric guitar. Dissecting Table’s iconic Death Metal-esque gurgled screams are already introduced, an element that Dissecting Table would be known for in the coming years. “I Get My Slogan” borders on straight up Goregrind in its ferocity The next two tracks, “Rotation Of The Conflict” and “Kill The Bestial Function”, as far as I can tell only exist as live recordings in the band’s discography. The former slows down the pace with sludge-laden guitars and heavy bass, and on the latter double bass drums kick off another round of Industrial cacophony. Besides “Cosmic Death”, the rest of the first disc comes from the “Ultra Point Of Intersection Exist” album. “Cosmic Death” hints at a transition from the somewhat primitive dissonant sound on “Ultra Point…” to a more complex sound design, without sacrificing aural brutality. In all, the first disc captures a primal performance which would set the stage for what’s to come over the next few years.