Genghis Tron are without a doubt a band ahead of their time. While the aesthetic choice of drum machines and grindcore influence were around before they rose to the good graces of critics and fans alike, they took the “cybergrind” sound and made it their own. This wholly unique three-piece group — which only contains two synth players and a guitarist — may be ambiguous on the spectrum of avant-garde music, but they’re trailblazers in the realm of experimental metal.
The earlier work of Genghis Tron is almost tongue-in-cheek. They threw together grindcore, trip-hop, and various electronica genres which alienated many people — something any avant-garde band worth their salt should be doing. They forged a new spastic sound since aped by the likes of iwrestledabearonce and Arsonists Get All The Girls with a debut EP titled Cloak of Love in 2005. Rough around the edges as it was, its wild experimentation turned many heads, and it isn’t hard to figure out why:
Genghis Tron continued a steady rise in notoriety, touring with the likes of The Dillinger Escape Plan, Converge, and Kylesa. Their debut full-length album Dead Mountain Mouth simultaneously expanded and streamlined the band’s intense sound further. Suddenly, the band began writing more coherent tracks and taking their musicianship a bit more seriously. Across the record, the band carried a hodge-podged sound of grindcore, mathcore, IDM, doom, and techno. Songs were getting longer and the album just felt more coherent, unlike Cloak of Love‘s unpredictable viciousness.
This trend would continue onto their 2008 magnum opus (and Relapse Records debut) Board Up The House, where the band achieved a new plateau of musicianship and songwriting that pushed the band towards ‘Album of the Year’ status for many websites and magazines (Rock Sound for instance) and near-universal acclaim. The band’s sound relied more on atmosphere and melody rather than wildly-shifting spastics, but the band retained their intensity and experimental attitude.
Not long after the touring cycle for Board Up The House, the band went on hiatus and have kept quiet since:
Things have been pretty quiet for Genghis Tron recently, which has led some folks to ask us if we’re breaking up. Well, we definitely aren’t breaking up, but we have decided to take some time away from the band.
It will be a while before we release another record — and probably even longer before we play shows. However, this was the best thing we could do to make sure that GT keeps writing some real toe-tappers. Whenever we come back, it will probably be pretty weird and really good.
Thanks for all of the support,
— Mookie, Michael, and Hamilton
Last year the band promised to return, but otherwise it’s all up in the air and the band are as quiet as they ever were.
I think 2013 is the time for Genghis Tron to return. Since their bowing out a few years ago, bands who have taken their influence have risen to popularity, and the promise of a “comeback” album would surely be enough to launch the metal-verse into rabid anticipation — after all, nothing makes people appreciate what they’ve had until it’s gone. The band left us on a high note, which is as good of a time to go as any, but the idea of taking the sound presented on Board Up The House into their next step in evolution is an exciting prospect. Despite the copycats and progeny that followed, no band sounds like Genghis Tron, and we need more unique bands like this out there carving out new niches for exploration.