'ALL ABOUT MIMI' (PSF RECORDS/PSFD188/JPN/CD/2009/05/25)
01 Hour of Death (Kaneko Jutok)
02 Remember (Suzuki)
03 That Spiral Orbit (Suzuki/Shimura)
04 Farside of the Dream (Kaneko Jutok)
05 1-3-5 (Suzuki/Shimura)
06 Wrong Distance (Suzuki/Shimura)
07 Teiji Romen (Nishimura)
Guitar, Vocals, Words- Suzuki Junzo *
Bass - Nishimura Takuya *
Drums - Shimura Koji
Engineer - 中村宗一郎 *
Lyrics By - Suzuki Junzo * (tracks: 2, 3, 5 to 7)
Photography - T. Susaki
Recorded at Peace Music, Tokyo on 11 January, 2009
Special thanks to Mick (Kousokuya), Alan Cummings.
"Another first release on PSF for Miminokoto , a Tokyo-based garage psychedelic rock trio who have previously released a string of acclaimed albums on the Alchemy, Gyuune, Siwa and Last Visible Dog labels. This is the group's first album since Junzo Suzuki (20 Guilders, Astral Travelling Unity, ex Overhang Party) took over on vocals and guitar.
The key to this group has always been their deep sense of song -- a densely emotive core around which the songs surge, billow and break. That core is retained here with an even harder psychedelic edge to the guitar. Includes two covers of songs by the late Jutok Kaneko of Kousokuya. Forty minutes, seven tracks."
-- Alan Cummings
Woah ? some kinda upheaval in the ranks of Miminokoto results in the replacement of Masami Kawaguchi with Suzuki Junzo (Astral Travelling Unit/Overhang Party) on guitar and vocals and then they only go and cut an unbelievable album for PSF with no less than two (!) cover versions of Kousokuya tracks penned by the late Jutok Kaneko. To say that this is precisely my kinda deal is state the bleeding obvious. One of the things that always made Miminokoto stand out was the languorous, sun-swallowing vocal style of Kawaguchi and Junzo does a great job of approximating his post-Jim Morrison style. Of course no one can play Kaneko material with quite the brokedown gravity of Kaneko himself but these fantastic re-thinks (of “Hour Of Death” and “Farside Of The Dream” specifically) demonstrate what a fantastic and talented composer he was. Still miss him. Miminokoto's own tracks are totally classic and they have the feel of an earlier generation of PSF artists, with doomy death-decadent ballads soaked in reverb while single chords hang in the air and Junzo's vocals waft around them like smoke. The lead guitar work is totally thrilling and the rhythm section of bassist Takuya Nishimura and drummer Koji Shimura have that classic minimal/explosive style down to a teardrop. A classic PSF side, an amazing reinvention, this is the sound of the psychedelic Japanese underground. Highly recommended.
-- Volcanic Tongue (Scotland/UK)
Following a lineup change, Miminokoto released a superb live CDR last year, which had me looking forward to a new official album ?
and here it is, albeit under the name New Miminokoto, apparently to distinguish itself from the earlier incarnation. The main change is guitarist and vocalist Junzo Suzuki, who has been mentioned on this blog before. His style isn't radically different from previous guitarist Masami Kawaguchi, who's busy now with his own New Rock Syndicate, but Suzuki's feel seems even better suited for the dark, bluesy psychedelia of Miminokoto. His voice is passionate, and his guitar work moves fluidly from slow, delicate strumming into fierce fuzz-driven leads. Drummer Koji Shimura, the group leader, is joined by bassist-around-town Takuya Nishimura, whose bass alternates between steady, solid rhythm work and busier melodic playing. Miminokoto has never made a secret of its inspiration from Kousokuya's main man Kaneko Jutok, and here tribute is paid with two of Kaneko's songs. The first, “Hour of Death,” might be my favorite piece on the album. A few years ago I was scheduled to play a show in Tokyo on a bill with Kaneko, but he shockingly passed away a month or so before the show. Instead, I was fortunate to see Shimura join a tribute to Kaneko with singer Mick and, if I recall correctly, Nishimura on bass.
Released by the stalwart PSF label, this is a must for anyone who's enjoyed the previous Miminokoto outings as well as any of the other bands mentioned here. The band also have a great live album which they're shopping around here in the U.S. (anyone with a label who's interested, let me know and I'll put you in touch with them!). Hopefully they'll get that released and come tour soon.
新たなヴォーカリスト・Suzuki Junzoを迎えNew Miminokotoとグループ名を変え、現在では類の無い、穏やかで深く、魂を感じさせる New Psychedelicが誕生した！亡き金子寿徳のカヴァー曲も素晴らしい。 サイケデリック・ファン以外にも、心に感じる「歌」を聴いてみたいという人にも推薦です。
新ヴォーカル＆ギタリスト、Suzuki Junzoを迎え、みみのことが“New Miminokoto”として生まれ変わった。流行り廃りや時空を超越した日本語の情念＆叙情ロック。くぐもったサウンドの向こうからさまざまな景色が見 える。それは“サイケ”の一言では表現しきれない。
New Miminokoto, same as the old Miminokoto? Kinda! And that's a good thing, if you're a fan of the Japanese psych underground and this particular manifestation of the "Tokyo Flashback" vibe, Miminokoto both new and old being one of those bands, like LSD-march, Up-Tight, and Suisho No Fune, in the glorious distortodelic tradition of '70s masters/mysteries Les Rallizes Denudes... Yet, it's not it's not the quite same, as the old Miminokoto, 'cause lead guitar wrangler and vocalist Masami Kawaguchi has left the band (forming his own "New Rock Syndicate"). To replace him, they recruited Suzuki Junzo, formerly of Overhang Party, a Tokyo psych scene vet who has no problem at all slipping into the role of New Miminokoto frontman, bringing his own dark aura to bear on guitar and vocals, alongside the bass of Nishimura Takuya and the drums of Shimura Koji (ex-White Heaven).
Recorded last year, this release is also actually not all that "new", we've been wanting to list this for a while, just finally got enough of 'em in stock direct from Japan, and can now say: get it, it's great! Gorgeous stuff, when they get mellow, and gorgeous too when all amps are set on 10. There are indeed plenty of languidly paced mellow meanders, as well as fuzz-filled blow-outs, dense and devastating. And even at their loudest, Miminokoto manage to be quite mesmerically melodic, as they do during the more gentle shimmering sections of this set as well.
The seven tracks here include two fantastic covers of songs by the late Kaneko Jutok of Kousokuya (another long time Tokyo psych institution, a la Fushitsusha). They utterly fit the Miminokoto vibe, of course. Another vibe we're getting here is that of Neil Young, maybe it's 'cause we've been listening to his heavy new one, Le Noise... there's probably a lot of people who'll pick up that new Neil (also reviewed this list, and recommended) who'll never ever hear, nor hear of, Miminokoto... but we bet they'd like this, as long as the language thing doesn't get in the way for 'em. Sure, you don't know what Suzuki is singing about (only one title is given in English, "Wrong Distance", which is kind of clever) but it doesn't matter. The emotion in his voice - not to mention the emotion cranking through the guitar amps - conveys enough! This has been a go-to late-night listen for us ever since it showed up...
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PSF RECORDS/Modern Music
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