Master drummer Ikuro Takahashi is a bona fide living legend / dark prince of the Japanese psychedelic underground, having served time in the cockpits of void-chasing juggernauts like High Rise, Fushitsusha and LSD March, as well as anchoring more pastorally minded, slow-burning troupes like Nagasa Ni Te and Maher Shalal Hash Baz (we could list at least a dozen more).
Born in Hokkaido in 1957, he lived in downtown Tokyo for some years before settling back in Sapporo with his partner, dancer Yoko Murunoi. All the music featured on this LP from An’Archives was composed for live performances from their Anoyonodekigoto duo project. Yoko died in 2017, so しりえないものとずっと (Shirienaimono to Zutto) is a kind of elegy, “the last flower laid at the shrine of her dance.” There are some passages of bin-lid crashing catharsis, no mistake, but the most striking of these six improvisations venture into a more granular ambient realm - although I’m not sure“ambient” is exactly the right word to describe music so teeming and twitching with anguish and fury and general unrest. Overlaying oscillators, music boxes and metronomes, Takahashi generates rhythmic, fluid, circular patterns (the influence of Takehisa Kosugi looms large) that seem designed to unpick the locks of the spirit-world, if he doesn't kick the goddamn door down first. Very special presentation from An as usual, with silkscreened jacket, obi, inserts and postcard. Edition of 275.