From: Wesley (wesleyhongkong_at_earthlink.net)
Date: 2003-03-14 01:19:41
Feature :: Rasa (bayaka), O.N.O./Daily Yomiuri
the portion on Rasa should be of interest to people here. Rasa is made
up of the same duo from bayaka. the writer also alludes the Rasa sound
to 'Bitches Brew.'
-- source: Daily Yomiuri In Your Ear Paul Jackson Daily Yomiuri Staff Writer RASA The Unknighted Nations Revirth, 2,730 yen The title alone could inspire a late night debate about its intended meaning, especially at this pivotal juncture in time. But putting such speculations to one side, the music on this release certainly will challenge the mental circuitry of most listeners. Very much a move toward the deep and abstract, Rasa is the latest project by Bayaka, an electronica double act made up of producer and deejay Mitsuru Matsuki and talented programmer Teruo Seno. Bayaka are better known for their warm, electronica-meets-world music releases that give the more house-inspired Chari Chari a run for his globetrotting money as last year's impressive Inner Film showed. But Bayaka as Rasa produce a different sound altogether. This is moody, brooding electronica mixed with live instrumentation that will inspire an inward journey of meditation for those who are open to sounds that do not offer up any immediate or obvious hook or motif. Perhaps this music is even a little antisocial and best appreciated through a set of personal headphones. The most rewarding moments are the Bitches Brew-evoking "Optic Realities," "Round Midnight" (which has more to do with a detective story than a jazz standard) and "Whims of Usus," an atmospheric confluence of Middle Eastern character and electronic gadgetry. In its weakest moments, though, The Unknighted Nations sounds like a directionless jam session featuring a frustrated rock bassist, a retro guitarist and a hyperactive drum programmer. Meanwhile, some of the transitions within tracks are more unsettling than those between tracks. But for the most part, the release delivers some great sounds for fans of introverted electronica. Mitsuru's production is very clean while the placement and variety of Seno's beats is at times mesmerizing. Also impressive are guest musicians, Bucci on wandering trumpet, Tokyo Zawinul Bach's Masayasu Tzboguchi on intense keyboards and Takuyuki Moriya on a bowed double bass that is positively head scouring. O.N.O. Six Month At Outside Stairs Tha Blue Herb Recordings, 2,940 yen Those wanting to delve still further into the realms of the abstract might next consider this release from the track-producing half of off-the-wall hip-hop outfit, Tha Blue Herb. Much darker and even less organic than The Unknighted Nations, this album could conceivably represent the inner thoughts of someone confined to an outdoor staircase for six months. There's no live instrumentation on the album, but there are a lot of industrial beats to make up for it. In fact, a prolonged listen to this while under the influence might bring back memories of a previous incarnation as some kind of piston on a factory assembly line. But if you are looking for some electronica to accompany a dark introspective mood, this release will certainly fulfill its role. The pick of the 10 tracks are the brooding "Ereticent" and the dreamlike "Narrowboat," which makes use of a Japanese festival flute sample. O.N.O. appears to use the same sample--after it has been stretched around and filtered through various effects--on two other tracks as a kind of motif. But while these tracks are very effective, some of the others generate a lot of tense expectation without delivering and would benefit from a little more arrangement so as to maintain interest longer. http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/newse/20030313woa3.htm -- ECLECTIC Japan [Sound :: Lounge] http://groups.yahoo.com/group/SoundLounge