In Japanese culture, a kaiju is a magnificent mythical beast – a monster that rises from the depths of the sea. The image is a fitting depiction of Kaiju’s sound. The duo is known for their master of visceral subfrequencies immersive enough to drown in. The most powerful aspects of their music are inaudible: meant to be felt rather than heard. The Kaiju experience is a sound system experience. The music is enjoyable to listen to, but the true magic occurs when it swallows you whole.
Kaiju’s tracks have been sound system staples ever since their first releases on Osiris in 2012. Today, the pair is best recognized from their Deep Medi releases: Justice/Creeper and Burn Down Babylon/Wrong Things are right at home rumbling any proper dance floor. Their style takes a dark twist on dubstep’s reggae roots, leading the listener out of their comfort zone and into the ominous nightmare realm of their own fears. Still, the journey is rarely jarring. During a Kaiju set, the dance floor is always bouncing – and when its over, the crowd emerges fearless.
Despite their iconic releases, Kaiju is most cherished for the tracks they withhold. In sets and mixes, Kaiju demonstrates a profound dominance of patience and timing; they mirror this tension with their releases. The Deep Medi holiday mix unveiled at the end of 2014 teastes out a selection of tunes very gradually beginning to be unleashed, creating an anticipation familiar to anyone who’s experienced one of Kaiju’s sets. Rumors of collaborations with many of today’s most prominent artists – including fellow Sub.mission Agency sweethearts – and phone-quality recordings keep the heads hanging in perpetual suspense. The sense of mystery surrounding Kaiju is fitting. In a music culture where artists tend to flood the internet with tracks, and streaming makes any sound accessible to those who know where to look, it is a rare treat to watch the dance floor explode not the same familiar bangers, but the tunes that have never before graced our ears.
The Deep Medi label is defined by a feeling rather than a style. While many labels showcase a specific aesthetic, Deep Medi is focused on a vibe. Beneath the sinister, creepy exterior, Kaiju’s music is really about love. They embrace the essential beauty of pain. The Kaiju remix of A Taste Of Struggle’s “Deep End” epitomizes the sweet truth of heartbreak – it is contained by love. “Justice” celebrates the merits of suffering: the vocal, “You can’t have peace without justice” is a testament to an insidious reality of human nature that is ultimately good. The duo exposes our inherent vulnerabilities and celebrates the softness. The Kaiju experience is one of primal tenderness. With a proper sound system, the sensation is something like a long hug from the person who knows the worst parts of you.
It’s easy to get lost in the world’s darkness. Instead of desperately attempting to escape it, Kaiju embraces the natural evil. It might look like a satanic ritual when we congregate on dimly lit dance floors to take communion from the subwoofers, but really, it’s just that once you submit to total blackness, the sharp edge where the light cuts through shines brilliant and warm like sun. After all, there is no light without darkness.
Follow Kaiju on Facebook and SoundCloud. Check out their agency page for upcoming appearances, booking information, and more.