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A progressive metal music group, for insufficient an improved term, Tokyo, Japan’s Gonin-Ish (which means “to unite music by five associates”) blend affects as diverse as pop, jazz, globe music, and loss of life steel, with lyrics inspired as very much by modern image storytelling (aka Manga) and archaic phrases drawn from common Japanese books — everything housed beneath the aegis of art rock and roll. Dynamic since 1997, the group also prides itself in getting entirely self-sufficient, managing not merely all areas of their songwriting and functionality, but also the artwork, design, documenting, distribution, and understanding of their albums, such as an eponymous 2000 debut and 2005’s Naishikyo-Sekai. Because of this, Gonin-Ish associates Anoji (vocals, electric guitar), Fumio Takahashi (business lead electric guitar), Masashi Momota (piano, synthesizers), Oyama Tetsuya (who supplanted primary bassist Yukihiro Matsuo), and Gaku Yamaguchi (who changed the Sigh-bound Junichi “JunJun” Harashima), didn’t appreciate much public identification for insufficient proper label support and distribution until 2008, when their second opus was reissued world-wide by the growing season of Mist label.

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