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'みみのこと ひとよぎり | Miminokoto Hitoyogiri ' (IMPORTANT RECORDS/IMPREC338/US/CD/2011/07/26)
1. ひとよぎり | Hitoyogiri (Suzuki/Nishimura)
2. 真夏の底 | Midsummer's End (Suzuki/Suzuki-Shimura)
3. 夜の手 | Hands of the Night (Suzuki/Shimura)
4. ヒヨコマメに | For Garbanzo (Suzuki/Shimura)
5. 凍りつく声 | Frozen Laughter (Suzuki/Shimura)
6. 白濁光 | Milky Light (Kaneko Jutok)
7. 震える舌 | Trembling Tongue (Suzuki/Shimura)
Suzuki Junzo (Vocals, Electric Guitars)
Nishimura Takuya (Bass)
Shimura Koji (Drums)
Recorded at Peace Music, Tokyo on 17 January 2010
Engineered By Nakamura Souichiro
Special Thanks : Mick (Kousokuya), Cherry, Alan Cummings
Photographs by Kawabata Makoto (Acid Mothers Temple)
Brand-new full-length from Miminokoto, highly recommended for fans of Tokyo- Underground, classic PSF Records, and contemporary Japanese outfits such as LSD March and Suishou No Fune. Features members of Acid Mothers Temple, Overhang Party, and Che-Shizu. Seven tracks, recorded at Peace Music by Nakamura Souichiro in late 2010, including an amazing cover of the late Jutok Kaneko's (Kosokuya) “Milky Light.” Get deep into the decadent death doom of Miminokoto.
'For a modern Japanese psych band, carrying the pedigree of an ex-White Heaven member in your ranks is something that quickly catches the eye; throw in ties to LSD-March, Broom Dusters, High Rise, and Acid Mothers Temple, and we're pretty much sold. In the vein of all of the above, Mininokoto's latest takes the PSF psych route and combines Velvets-style downtempo strums with the kind of guitar squall that one might expect from some of its members' connections. Hitoyogiri, the band's first full-length for Important Records, sounds a doom-laden trip for disciples of space blues. Tracks like "Midsummer's End," below, start out all somber and reserved before erupting into torrents of feedback and fuzz. In other words, they're just what you've been looking for.
( Andy French, Raven Sings The Blues')
Formed from offshoots of Japanese legends Acid Mothers Temple, Miminokoto return stateside with new album, Hitoyogiri . Much like the music of the Sub-Sahara region, Japan has quietly but mind-blowingly re-imagined classic American and British psychedelia. Miminokoto takes it a step further blending far-out sounds with claustrophobic garage rock embellishments, taken from old and new influences alike. The album kicks off with name sake, “Hitoyogiri,” a stoner jam that erupts into flames of violent guitar strums. But the trio shows off their softer (but no less edgy) side with follow-up “Midsummer's End,” a simple flower power pop turn. It's a vibe that is largely left unchanged; Hitoyogiri is allowed to blossom under the energy of Haight-Ashbury with the workman Zen of Japanese reinvention. “Milky Light” is the only glimpse of a band caught up in Grateful extravagance but please excuse this one indulgence, for even its distorted course is far more Crazy Horse than Jerry in execution.
There is something nicely vindicating about seeing MIMINOKOTO putting out their latest multi-coloured fuzz opus on distinguished american label IMPORTANT, The label that has put out releases by such underground liminaries as Michael Gira's Angel Of Light, Nurse With Wound, Kluster and Coil.
Talking Thier Moment, They hit the ground running opening with the title tracks urgent beat rhythm. It all begins as wonderful Psychedelic shake-down, The drumming getting wilder and the guitar playing rising into some mind-splitting solos but within the framework of the song.
This is perhaps MIMINOKOTO distinguishing feature among thie peers. They may have some touch-the-sky Guitar heroics and be other wordly troubadours but the song is king. They are not free rock improvisers, They are gloriously cosmic bluesmen. Imagine a supergroup combining the Animals with Les Rallizes Denudes and You might be on the right lines.
'Hands of the Night' is quite floaty, Mellow waltz with strange acid squiggling double bass rhythms. I am sure I have said this before but frontman Suzuki Junzo can solo with the best of them but has the excellent taste to do it only when the song allows. the same canbe said of all of MIMINOKOTO's most freaked out moments, They usually occur as the song crescends.
''HITOYOGIRI'' is some fuzzy, Blissed-out brainfood.
(Ned from Was-Ist Das)
Junzo Suzuki's vocals are a rich, dark but acquired taste, like a cross between Mark Eitzel and Stuart Staples, both at their most morose. But his guitar is a revelation on majestic tone and deep blues. Together with drummer Shimura Koji, he leads Miminoko through a complex but beautifully raw emotional set. "Hioyogiri" has an acoustic base that allows its electric moments to be that much more uplifting. These two Acid Mothers Temple refugees have power to burn.
The title track opens things up with a spastic, Orcutt-esque acoustic guitar, one that echoes into "Midsummer's End," its darkly psych melodic acoustic quickly fading into some great distorted riff that keeps a melodic sense, with Koji's drums providing extra colors as well as keeping time.
"Hands of the Night" and "For Garbanzo" are both mid-tempo, VU-ish ballads with an occasional electric outburst; "Frozen Laughter" follows that same structure, but Suzuki's awesome guitar work-shredding and moody, poignant and daring, finally fully cuts loose.
A switch in structure happens dramatically, and only once. "Milky Light," the mostly instrumental guitar freakout, is massive and full of colors and tones that provides some needed volume and light to the set. After that, the closer, "Trembling Tongue," another mid-tempo piece that is a sheer letdown after the memorable waves of "Light."
"Hitoyogiri" is a stark droning set with moments of beauty and power. The duo of Miminokoto balance tension and release in ways both sinister and liberating.
(Mike Wood by Musicmissions.com)
Miminokoto bring the murky and insular Hitoyogiri out in the light on Important Records. More meditative than out and out droning, Hitoyogiri create a ragged smoky haze that is rich with melancholy and yearning. Stoking the embers for a slow burn seems the priority over catching fire right out of the gate for Miminokoto; a tact that serves their deep and somewhat bluesy voyage well, especially on cuts like Frozen Laughter where the guitar fireworks bubble up and dissipate as mysteriously as they came in. Milky Light might be the slight exception to the rule coming out up front with the guitar dripping and drenching throughout. A mostly instrumental track, highlighting guitarist Suzuki Junzo's acrobatics, it's a more pronounced peak in the viscous dynamics that serves the album as much as the track. Trembling Tongue guides the ride out, rolling Hitoyogiri to the close with the same compressed smoldering coals used to begin the burn with opener Hitoyogiri. It's unmistakably a record made in the here and now, but coupled with some VU-like quivering and a kind of Neil Young raggedness, Hitoyogiri tips its hat to a wider range of ingredients that might not be so obvious on a first take.
Hitoyogiri , the latest full length from Japan's psych-supergroup Miminokoto, is brimming with basement rock jams channeling Velvet Underground's minimal rock and fried psychedelics. Easily garnering comparisons to LSD March and Suishou No Fune, and featuring members of Acid Mothers Temple and Overhang Party, the group creates a solid mix of fuzz rock slowed down to a drunkard's pace while retaining enough focus and drive to keep the party going. Most of the songs here are softer than you might expect, keeping the fiery guitar solos and scorching leads to a minimum. That's not to say the sound is lackluster though. Much like White Light/White Heat , the amps sound as though they've been turned up as much as possible. The playing isn't frantic, but there's a definite, physical intensity and vibrancy.
The opening, title track begins mid-jam with jangly guitars strumming along with the thick rhythm section. The VU vibe is in full effect as the song warmly yet disconnectedly thumps at a steady pace before abruptly ending in a heavy stutter, much like “White Light/White Heat” itself. “Midsummer's End,” “Hands of the Night,” and “Milky Light” highlight forceful guitar solos alongside downplayed vocal laments, adding a layer of dark blues to the group's sound. Overall, Hitoyogiri is a heavy assortment of subdued psych-rock that doesn't overplay blown-out solos or dwell on far-out passages of guitar drones.
(Bobby Power at Foxydigitals.com)
REPRESSED,With the correct music on it this time. If you got a copy before, take a look at the disc. If the background art on the disc is white, it's ok. If it's silver, then you have a disc with the wrong Miminokoto tracks on it (from a live album released in Japan recently). Whoops. If you got one of those from us, let us know and we'll get Important to send you a replacement.
The last time we heard from Tokyo underground psych-meisters Miminokoto, with their 2009 PSF release All About Mimi, they were calling themselves New Miminokoto. On account of how they'd replaced longtime lead singer/guitarist Masami Kawaguchi with Suzuki Junzo (ex-Overhang Party). Well, that's not news any more, so now they're back to calling themselves just plain Miminokoto. Suzuki Junzo is still capably fronting the group, wearing shades (we presume) and wranging his guitar through the usual distortodelic psych storms and melancholically poppy ramshackle jangle we expect from these exemplars of the hazy, heavy lidded, late-night "Tokyo Flashback" sound. Singing in Japanese, his voice is hushed and weary, the music often likewise, though they rev up for some of those feedback filled, Rallizes style blowouts we love at times too. On All About Mimi, the band covered a couple songs by the late Jutok Kaneko (Kousokuya), here they do another one, along with six others of their own, equally emotive and wrecked composition.
The label that put this disc out calls their style "decadent death doom" and while that might be a bit misleading to those of you who think you already know what "death doom" sounds like ('cause this definitely ain't metal, though it may be decadent), that description definitely captures the downer vibe. For sure they've got the blues, though this also isn't "blues" as commonly known, either. What it is, is a sad and gorgeous session of shimmering amp bliss, burbling bass, slow shuffling drums, aching vocals, creaky chords, and minor key melody.
Fans of prior Miminokoto output (new and old) as well as other Tokyo flashbackers like LSD-March, Up-Tight, Suishou No Fune, Kawaguchi New Rock Syndicate, Overhang Party etc. etc. should definitely dig!!
Featuring the kind of bleak, dark noisy psychedelic blues that I usually expect from the PSF Records guy, Miminokoto's “Hitoyogiri” maintains Japanese psych-guitar rock's strangle-hold on my fragile psyche. Generally the music on this CD is melancholy and wistful, or at the very least has a dark, inward ambience with steady low-key vocals that rarely become very emotional plus a blues-tinged guitar that may have a darkly sparkling tone and drumming that starts off quiet and steady and eventually erupts into virtuosic playing. A couple of tracks feature cloudbursts of searing distorted lead guitar and these songs will be the highlights of the album for many listeners including me.
The title track sets the pattern or template if you like for the songs to follow: the start of the song is just barely there and what develops is a repetitive rhythm that more or less continues for the duration of the track with some variations, usually those that turn on a change of key. Vocals begin quietly and are almost inaudible but become louder, a bit more emphatic, as the music progresses. The song becomes more free-form and near the end, it's become chaotic with blurry, distorted lead guitar tones and quite complex, improvised drumming. “Midsummer's End” follows the pattern but with a sparkling blues guitar melody.
The next couple of tracks see the Miminokoto men hit their stride: “Hands of the Night” features some really wistful, beautiful romantic melodies with the bassline following a different inspiration from the rest of the music. There's a flubby wah-wah sound inter-twined with the pleasant bass-guitar melody. Rhythm guitar tones can be very resonant. “For Garbanzo” has a plodding riff but the lead guitar breaks are what really make this album stand out: streams and streams of fuzzed-up guitar noise pour out of the speakers and fill up the space in your head until your eyes see colourful bright day-glo pin-pricks twinkling and dancing up and down in revolving concentric circles that themselves perform their own little square dance routines and form all kinds of strange geometric optical illusions that are usually featured only on Japanese psychologist and optical illusions buff Akiyoshi Kitaoka's website .
“Milky Light” is a faithful cover of the Kousokuya song, right down to the anguished vocals. Only the blurry lead guitar break-outs indicate that this is Miminokoto and not that doomy band whose leader Jutok Kaneko is, alas, no longer on this sad plane of existence. After this song, Miminokoto return to their familiar territory of minimal-sounding, bluesy psych-rock for a final hurrah but “Trembling Tongue” seems strangely inadequate after what we've just heard ? proof if needed that nothing, not even the M guys, can quite match Kousokuya in the Department of Dark Despair.
Good if perhaps not very inspired with strong blues influences, some fired-up noise guitar and a great sparkling, bewitching sound, Miminokoto serves up almost (but not quite) easy-listening psych-rock. I can certainly recommend this album as a beginner's guide to this particular Japanese-owned genre.
( http://www.thesoundprojector.com/ )
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