17 hours ago
Monday, January 18, 2010
It's been awhile since I killed off 'Prog Blog Wednesdays', which I know disappointed some of you, so I figured now would be a good time to post some fucking killer Japanese semi-orchestral Zeuhl/prog.
Hopefully we are all aware of the existence of Ruins, the seminal two-piece prog freakout masterminded by drummer/composer Tatsuya Yoshida. If not, please go here to check out their album Refusal Fossil and here to check out their album Burning Stone. Even in a country notorious for obtuse weirdness, Ruins stand head and shoulders above their diminutive countrymen when it comes to compositional insanity. These guys make drums, bass, and vocals sound like an orchestra of escaped mental patients.
So imagine, if you will, what Yoshida could do with a full band. That is the basic idea behind Koenjihyakkei (a word that - if I understand correctly - has no real English translation). Incorporating the best elements of Zeuhl heroes like Magma and Shub Niggurath (operatic female vocals, nonsensical lyrics, throbbing bass, and jittery wind instruments) but adding in something of a rapid-fire cartoonish whimsy a la Carl Stalling, Koenjihyakkei is widely regarded as one of the best and most talented progrock bands currently roaming the face of the planet. And Angherr Shisspa is widely regarded as their swan song.
Prepare to have your mind utterly and completely blown.
Website (via Skin Graft Records)
Koenjihyakkei on Myspace