East - S/T LP
East - S/T LP (Life Goes On/Italy)
Genre: Prog-rock, British folk, lite-psych, Japanese spirituals
Mood: Contemplative, somber, cerebral, poetic
Reissue, originally released in 1972. Possibly one of the most fascinating psychedelic albums that came out of Japan in the early seventies. Published in 1972 on Capitol Records' eastern brand, the album was then fully licensed to both the UK and American market due to his fascinating and lysergic moments. The opener "Beautiful Morning" soon became a classic on its own, showing the western influences of the band all along the spirit of the rising sun counterculture. A revolutionary effort in the end, coming from a different perspective and giving birth to a faint psych/folk/blues scenario.
“A reconciliation of the electric sounds of rock and the instruments of traditional Japanese music, performed in English but with the tranquil spirit of Zen” – original liner notes
Yet another celebration of east meets west, but approached in a a very different way. Here traditional Japanese instruments like the koto, shakuhachi, and taisho-goto are applied to Western rock and roll and it ends up sounding like a meditative (nod to zen), lite-psych/folk rock record tinged with bluegrass influences and prog for good measure. From a first glance listen, I suspect a lot of listeners wouldn't know these relaxed proggy jams were being performed by Japanese musicians at all until three or four songs in, the band's influences being that rooted deeply outside of their own country. Notes of Moody Blues, Procol Harum, and more low key Jethro Tull are all here and interestingly, a lot of fans liken the vocals to Scott Walker and Elvis. The group only made one album so this document captures a finite moment never to happen again.