Volcanic Tongue Catalogue

Keiji Haino + Dora Video
s/t

Macaroni Records MCRN-011

DVD
£19.99


Subtitled Dora Video Vs. Keiji Haino Vs. Keiji Haino, this is an up-close three camera pro filmed document of a searing Keiji Haino guitar/vox/electronics performance that took place on May 1st 2008 in Tokyo. Dora Video plays drums while Haino duets with himself courtesy of a back projection of previous and current performances. Haino is on incendiary form, launching himself fully into the guitar in the kind of immolating style of his early solo sides while the up-close camera style matches the official Fushitsusha DVD on PSF for physical drama. There are vocal loops, levitating passages of electronics and some of Haino’s most rock-anchored riffs in an age, while Dora plays it almost four-four throughout, to Haino’s obvious delight.

Various Artists
Undecided

PSF PSFD-153

CD
£13.99


A compilation that culls tracks from a series of ‘lecture concerts' that took place between September 2003 and February 2004 at Mesar Haus, Tokyo. Kicks off with a fantastically dense hurdy-gurdy drone from Keiji Haino and also features tracks from guitarist Kazuo Imai, pianist Junichiro Okuchi, shamisen master Michihiro Sato, turntablist Otomo Yoshihide and saxophonist Masayoshi Urabe.

Various Artists
Dead Silence

Room 40 RMBK-002

Art Book
£17.99


Nicely presented/compiled art book, put together by Lawrence English with contributions from a head-spinning range of artists on the subject of ‘dead silence’: ranging across art, text, essays, letters and photography with contributions from musicians/artists/writers such as Keiji Haino (who discusses the meaning of ‘Seijaku’), Liz Harris aka Grouper, Alan Licht, Makino Takashi, Jamie Stewart, Marina Rosenfeld, James Webb, Benoit Pioulard, Steve Roden, Eugene Carchesio, Terre Thaemliz, Sandra Selig, Jack Sargeant, Philip Samartzis, Greg Hainge, Ross Manning (Sky Needle), David Toop and Heiko Muller.

Keiji Haino/Masataka Fujikake Duo
Hard

Full Design Records FDR-1026

CD
£18.99


Stunning second Japan-only album from the duo of Keiji Haino on electric guitar and vocals and Masataka Fujikake on drums: Fujikake comes out of the whole Null/Tabata/Zeni Geva end of gravity defying Japanese metal and it suits Haino just fine, pushing him into some of his most purely euphoric Fushitsusha-scale six string bulldozing. Not much vocals on here, as the feel is more akin to The Caution Appears-era Fushitsusha, but Haino’s playing is really lyrical while still being pulverising. He generates these amazing repeat-looping patterns that zag between Beefheart, Royal Trux and motorik avant garage before just laying waste to the whole deal with endlessly peaking solos or cranking, time-staggered riffs. Fujikake keeps pushing Haino the whole way, playing weird tonal tattoos one minute and just all-out rocking the bandstand the next. But really, this goes beyond their first meeting considerably and makes for the perfect blueprint of what a duo guitar/drums post-Ozawa Fushitsusha might sound like. In other words, staggering. We’re pretty much blown away by this at VT, easily one of the top ten Haino releases and a mandatory purchase if you really wanna understand just what alla the fuss is over Haino’s total reinvention of rock dynamics. Highest possible recommendation!!

Various Artists
Ongaku 90

Hiruko Records HLP-04

LP
£23.99


Third volume in this on-going series that documents various stages of evolution of the Japanese underground: following the 70s and 80s the 90s set is the real gravy and represents the decade that was the most creatively accelerated in terms of underground activity. Cream of the crop here is an amazing studio recording from the classic trio Fushitsusha line-up, “Magic V”, with Haino on electric guitar and vocals, Yasushi Ozawa on electric bass and Jun Kosugi on drums recorded during the sessions for their 1993 album for John Zorn’s Avant label, Allegorical Misunderstanding. Haino’s vocal are particularly potent, moving from a high lamenting style to aggressive epiglottal action while the group work the kind of complex rock rhythm equations that would come to define their current incarnation. But that’s not all. There’s a classic “Moungod” live ritual from Masaki Batoh’s Ghost, from their classic self-titled 1997 debut, “Moungod Te Deum” and Hoppy Kamiyama’s legendary God Mountain label is represented by Demi Semi Quaver’s “A*merika”. We also get a great goof of a track from ‘noise’ legends The Gerogerigegege and tracks from Phew, composer/trumpeter Jun Miyake, Ryuichi Sakamoto, E*trance, weirdo J-pop from Takako Minekawa and of course no 90s overview would be complete without a track from legendary guitarist/songwriter and Org recording artist Idiot O’Clock. A great and wide-ranging overview of the creative tumult of underground music in Japan in the 1990s. Recommended.