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Brain Police (Zunou Keisatsu)

Haruo ‘Panta’ Nakamura – vocals, guitar
Toshi Ishizuka – drums, congas, bongos
Hiroshi Nar (Narazaki) – guitar

Coming on like a politicised Tyrannosaurus Rex in the style of Terry Stamp’s Third World War, Zunou Keisatsu were a radical protest band with a penchant for changing members and line-ups often depending on who was straight enough to make it all the way through the gig. They were formed in the late ‘60s by vocalist and guitarist Panta, who had formerly played with festival obscurities Peanut Butter, Mojo and Spartacus Bunt, and Brain Police songs were all built around the guitarist’s fist-in-the-air people-at-the-barricades lyrics. Taking their name from the early Mothers of Invention song ‘Who Are The Brain Police?’ the band survived long enough to make six LPs and continued until the end of 1975. However, there are two obvious peaks in their career, the first being their rousing duo performance at the GENYA anti-airport protest festival, when Panta and conga player Toshi shared a bill with Blues Creation, Masauki Takayanagi’s free rock New Direction For The Arts, and Keiji Haino’s Lost Aaraaff. Performances of the songs ‘Pick Up Your Gun’ and the seven-minute chant ‘World Revolutionary War Declaration’ received such a positive response from the crowd that the nihilism of closing act Lost Aaraaff was greeted with large rocks hurled from the Sanrizuka fields. Their second career high happened the following year in 1972, when, unable to secure a record deal, they self-released their debut LP (which was recorded live at Kyoto Gymnasium) on their own Be-witch record label, with a controversial front cover that starred an infamous criminal who had dressed as a security guard to achieve his heist. The punk packaging included a gold-printed 13” x 13” mailer and Xeroxed inner sheets. Drummer Toshi Ishizuka later played with Kan Mikami, Jokers and Mikami’s insane ‘90s trio Vajra. Sometime member Hiroshi Nar joined Les Rallizes Denudes, suffered some temporary mental illness, and nowadays records with The Niplets.

Julian Cope
  • ZUNOU KEISATSU 1 (0000)
  • AKUTARE KOZO (Sixth LP) (Victor, 1974)
  • Brain Police (Zunou Keisatsu) - ZUNOU KEISATSU 1ZUNOU KEISATSU 1

  • The debut LP by Brain Police (pictured) was immediately banned for its political sentiments and use of an infamous bank robber as its cover star
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