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Vis A Vis Audio Arts

Profile:

Japanese independent label established in 1987 by Juntaro Yamanouchi, the founder and leader of a controversial noise/experimental band The Gerogerigegege. VAVAA was inactive from 1996 to 2016, during the band's extended hiatus.

After publishing Gerogerigegege's first two LPs and a few 7" flexi-discs, including a notorious 愛人 = Ai-Jin (all 2000 copies burned at the Enoshima Beach on the release day) and Fuchait by The Haters, Yamanouchi began corresponding and exchanging demos with a large network of international noise artists, mailorders, labels, distributors, etc. A few LPs came out on Vis A Vis this way, including Achim Wollscheid's project S.B.O.T.H.I., Ramleh, and Pierpaolo Zoppo's Mauthausen Orchestra. A notable and curious exception was a straight-forward pop-rock Koji Kita & Scar Face (2) - Flower CD/LP. Yamanouchi met Koji Kita through an ex-classmate from the Tokyo International University, rock musician Kenji Otsuki, and somehow convinced Koji to release his album on VAVAA.

Vis A Vis Audio Arts switched to CD and started issuing high-quality pressings (3000 copies and more) with professional design, OBI-strips, booklets, etc. Those include a '90 パンクの鬼 (Tokyo Anal Dynamite) with excellent Yoshikazu Ebisu's artwork, and an archival compilation Live Greatest Hits with three early live shows (featuring crowd reactions to Gero 30's masturbation). The majority of VAVAA releases went sold out in Japan, with limited quantities exported to Europe and the United States.

In 2016, Juntaro Yamanouchi reactivated both the Gerogerigegege band and Vis A Vis Audio Arts label, producing a few compilations: an 'official bootleg' Art Is (C)over Vol.1 - Tribute to The Gerogerigegege CD (which eventually led to a whole 'Bootleg of a Bootleg' series), and Rebellion 1985 tape. A steady stream of cassette releases followed in 2017, both original works and obscure reissues: two Hal McGee tapes under his Dog As Master alias, and seven releases by a free improv/noise unit Smell & Quim. More artists joined VAVAA catalog: a free jazz/noisecore outfit Haigan with Genocide Of The Good Friends CD, and a Japanese folk-pop singer Cullcanecho.

The label began reissuing early out-of-print releases in 2018, starting with a Senzuri Champion Revised = センズリチャンピオン-改訂版- CD with 1985–88 alternate takes, live versions, and remixes, as well as new 'Ramones covers' for '91 Live Greatest Hits and '96 Mort Douce Live CDs—mimicking an ultra-rare Showa (Ramones Edition) of the band's second LP. Vis A Vis Audio Arts also produced a 3-part 'Blackout Archive' CD series in paper sleeves, which included two rare tapes from 1991–93 previously bootlegged by Michael Gillham, and some '98 acoustic sessions with 'free wood bassist.' A few deluxe boxset reissues of rare Gerogerigegege early tapes followed in 2019: an '85 Gerogerigegege eponymous debut, '86 The Gero-P originally recorded with NP, and two tapes by Juntaro's side project Nihilist Surfin' Group.

Related series: Blackout Archive, Bootlegs Eat Bootlegs Archive

Sublabels:Blackout Archive, Bootlegs Eat Bootlegs Archive
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