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    Fushitsusha – (Live)

    Fushitshusha - Live

    Fushitsusha is Keiji Haino’s main line—his most prominent, best gift-giving, longest-running group and the vehicle voted most likely to simultaneously massage and damage the known universe of eardrums and cortexes. This album first appeared as a 2-LP on vinyl only back in 1989 and entered the Official Hall of Whispers quickly, only to top the list–along with the Taj Mahal Travellers–of the most desirable and unobtainable Japanese music artifacts in the years to come. Finally reissued as a 2-CD set at the end of 1997, a slightly wider swath of humanity has been offered the chance to shower in these dirty grooves. Stay nude. True to form, the reissue is housed in a mini-LP-style gatefold jacket approximating the original: completely black with just the band name written small in Japanese down the middle of the front cover and a small cross on the right panel inside. The paper inner sleeves and discs themselves are likewise soaked in “the combination of all colors.”

    The first disc contains four tracks and 45 minutes of dirty, swamp sound—kicking off with some scuzzy blues rock held together by a slowly chugging rhythm guitar courtesy of Maki Miura, low-end bass power by Yasushi Ozawa, not to mention Jun Kosugi’s freely splacked drums on top of which Keiji Haino splays the most playful yet arcing guitar lines of loose abandon. The rocking out continues on track two, highlighted with some more sprightly guitar work—making way for the centerpiece: an incredibly pleasant and sparse realm of dream-levitation. It’s all supported by a very simple four-note bass line and an echoing side-guitar strum which Keiji Haino eases into with the most restrained lead guitar notes and soft, gentle singing imaginable. Eventually, Haino foreheads his guitar completely out of the realm of all known human considerations via unusual progressions, slop-o stalls and keening wails. He also busts out a rare harmonica bit on the closing song.

    The four tracks on disc two take up a bit more time for a grand total of 52 minutes. Starting quietly with the most standard balladeering ever offered by this band, the first song really picks up when Keiji Haino sends his piercing, outer space guitar semi-circles soaring into the nether regions. On track two, dissonant rhythm-section jolts punctuated by plenty of feedback whine and piercing lead guitar lines plus a desperate vocal display later splay into an intense noise hurricane that could easily level South Carolina. Third up, Keiji Haino melds a very quiet, mild strum into a murky field of loud, obtuse, sour note-picking and back again. The set is completed with a stretching, 26-minute vista that switches back and forth several times between droning strums, faster stuttered rhythm sections with nice singing, not to mention plenty of very spare, beautiful balladry and lightness. The music on this release is easily the most pleasant and accessible ever made by Fushitsusha or Keiji Haino, making it by far the best place to start for the beginner.

    Label: PSF Catalog Number: PSFD-3/4 Format: 2-CD Packaging: Mini-LP gatefold Tracks: Disc 1: 4, Disc 2: 4 Total Time: Disc 1: 44:58, Disc 2: 51:59 Country: Japan Released: 1989 on 2-LP, 1997 on 2-CD Related Artists: Keiji Haino More: Forced Exposure, Official, Poison Pie, Wikipedia

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