【review/rate】coaltar of the deepers / rabbit ep

released 2018, u-desper records.

Illustrious japanese shoegazers Coaltar of the Deepers return with the Rabbit EP, their first EP titled-after-an-animal in nearly 12 years!

I’m sure you’re wondering whether a new release from such a legendary force in the J-alt scene is a good starting point for beginning your dive into their discography (assuming you’re new to COTD of course!), and if you ask me, I’d say the Rabbit EP is perfect.

“Hallucination’18” opens like an ecstasy-induced fever dream, with techno beats providing the base while COTD’s signature muddy guitars assault the ears in style. Narasaki’s childlike vocals hitting my eardrums feels like a reunion after so long, and he sounds great.  “Summer Gazer’92” shows off the more relaxing side of COTD. They’re no strangers to bossa nova and shibuya-kei elements, as heard on their 2002 “Newave” LP, or “Carnival” off 2007’s “Yukari Telepath”.  The reverberated (and sometimes anomalous) guitars show up in the midst of a thumping rhythm that’s accentuated by various ambient sounds (you’ll hear a guitar solo in the outro, as well as some lovely strings and saxophone!).

The back half of the Rabbit EP is home to “Dear Future’18” and “Langsam Blut’13”, two fairly straightforward tracks that keen anime geeks may recognize from Mawaru Penguindrum and Paradise Kiss respectively.  These versions are re-recorded and a lot better mixed/mastered compared to their original counterparts (in my opinion, cough).

After numerous years of teasing, delays, and broken release date promises, “Rabbit EP” came and conquered the hearts of many long time Coaltar fans (myself included).  It earns its spot up on the storied shelf of previous Coaltar of the Deepers EPs and sounds both at home with previous works and very much like a new sound and direction.  I’m hoping we don’t have to wait another decade+ for the next COTD album/EP/single, because this was a great comeback.

Purchase the “Rabbit” EP on CDJapan.
Listen to the “Rabbit” EP in its entirety below!

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