It is like the mighty tiger as Gendo Ikari takes their striking position and pounces from the first, grim-stricken seconds of Unit 1, the band’s 2016 release that is no longer than ten-minutes. The impervious nature of the record is unaffected by what surrounds Gendo Ikari, as they are wrapped tightly in a veil of fire that is set ablaze by the unfiltered instrumentation and vocals. It takes on the spirit of vengeance as Gendo Ikari becomes the embodiment of anguish through, “Assistance”, the first deep-cut off of Unit 1 that hits and delivers heavily on the frantic nature of noise. Gendo Ikari is almost agonizing to listen to in long-term and each track feels more weighted than the last. It is the sudden burst of energy that kicks the listener down and becomes an atrocity exhibition of rampaging walls of sound, that just continue to constrict and constrict.
Gendo Ikari is a different breed of animal that shows very little remorse when it comes to break-downs and the second track of Unit 1, “Categorised” is another simple account of assault on the listener but follows moments of rhythm where the band lets the instruments become less like a hammer coming down, and more like a train that focuses on a continuation of one, unified sound. It is not until the bitter bass lines of “Epitome” is there a slowed approach to the madness. It is the closest thing to having a break from the almost devastating and pulverizing crushes that Gendo Ikari calls the tracks. Unit 1 is best listened to as a single, long, drawn-out journey of tracks that are put together as a single collection.
From start to finish, Gendo Ikari creates a hellish dive into the deep end of gasoline and lighter fluid where the band just continues to hammer away through punishing instrumentation. The final track, “Politics” is a send-off into the deepest sections where Gendo Ikari acts as the executioner, first beginning with a uprising. The beginning is by no means gentle, but the drum and bass that floods the track is brilliant as it suddenly shifts into second-gear where the growls and howling of the guitars and vocals can appear in a drowned fashion. Then at the midpoint of “Politics”, Gendo Ikari resorts back to their usual style of introducing absolute terror as the track becomes a shouting match from the instrumentalists that fades into the incredibly distant silence.
Unit 1 is a quick disaster that shows itself and disappears in the same short timeframe. It is the sudden punches that make Gendo Ikari a deadly weapon of criminal insult that can not only offend, but can illustrate a sense of real death behind their style.