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Haino, Keiji / Sumac

Even for just the briefest moment Keep charging this "expiation" Plug in to making it slightly better

Haino, Keiji / Sumac: Even for just the briefest moment Keep charging this

The second collaboration between the American avant-metal rock trio Sumac of guitarist Aaron Turner, drummer Nick Yacyshyn and bassist Brian Cook with Japanese legendary guitarist and vocalist Keiji Haino finds the quartet settling down from their first blast of an album, here slowly building their heavy feedback-drenched, ponderous and epic music.

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product information:

UPC: 9120036682900

Label: Trost Records
Catalog ID: TROST 183CD
Squidco Product Code: 27540

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2019
Country: Austria
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold
Recorded at Fever, in Tokyo, Japan, on July 3rd, 2017, by Soh Ki Moon.


Keiji Haino-guitar, voice, flute, taepyeongso

Aaron Turner-guitar

Nick Yacyshyn-drums

Brian Cook-bass

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Artist Biographies:

"Keiji Haino (灰野 敬二 Haino Keiji) born May 3, 1952 in Chiba, Japan, and currently residing in Tokyo, is a Japanese musician and singer-songwriter whose work has included rock, free improvisation, noise music, percussion, psychedelic music, minimalism and drone music. He has been active since the 1970s and continues to record regularly and in new styles.

Haino's initial artistic outlet was theatre, inspired by the radical writings of Antonin Artaud. An epiphanic moment came when he heard The Doors' "When The Music's Over" and changed course towards music. After brief stints in a number of blues and experimental outfits, he formed improvised rock band Lost Aaraaf in 1970. In the mid 1970s, having left Lost Aaraaf, he collaborated with psychedelic multi-instrumentalist Magical Power Mako.

His musical output throughout the late 1970s is scarcely documented, until the formation of his rock duo Fushitsusha in 1978 (although their first LP did not surface until 1989). This outfit initially consisted of Haino on guitar and vocals, and Tamio Shiraishi on synthesizer. With the departure of Shiraishi and the addition of Jun Hamano (bass) and Shuhei Takashima (drums), Fushitsusha operated as a trio. The lineup soon changed, with Yasushi Ozawa (bass) and Jun Kosugi (drums) performing throughout the 1990s, but returned to a duo with Haino supplementing percussion with tape-loops.

Haino formed Aihiyo in 1998, principally playing a diverse range of covers (including The Rolling Stones, The Ronettes, and the Jimi Hendrix Experience), transforming the original material into Haino's unique form of garage psychedelia.

NHK, Japan's national broadcaster, banned him from broadcast from 1973 to 2013.

Other groups Haino has formed include Vajra (with underground folk singer Kan Mikami and drummer Toshiaki Ishizuka), Knead (with the avant-prog outfit Ruins), Sanhedolin (with Yoshida Tatsuya of Ruins and Mitsuru Nasuno of Korekyojinn, Altered States and Ground Zero) and a solo project called Nijiumu. He has also collaborated with many artists, including Faust, Boris, Derek Bailey, Joey Baron, Peter Brötzmann, Lee Konitz, Loren Mazzacane Connors, Charles Gayle, Earl Kuck, Bill Laswell, Musica Transonic, Stephen O'Malley, Makigami Koichi, Ayuo, Merzbow, Oren Ambarchi, Jim O'Rourke, John Zorn, Yamantaka Eye, John Duncan, Fred Frith and Charles Hayward.

His main instruments of choice have been guitar and vocals, with many other instruments and approaches incorporated into his career's work. Haino is known for intensely cathartic sound explorations, and despite the fact that much of his work contains varied instrumentation and accompaniment, he retains a distinctive style.

Haino cites a broad range of influences, including troubadour music, Marlene Dietrich, Iannis Xenakis, Blue Cheer, Syd Barrett, and Charlie Parker. At a young age, he had an epiphany through his introduction to The Doors. His recent foray into DJing at Tokyo nightclubs has reportedly reflected his eclectic taste. He has had a long love affair with early blues music, particularly the works of Blind Lemon Jefferson, and is heavily inspired by the Japanese musical concept of "Ma", the silent spaces in music (see Taiko for more information). In a 2012 interview with Time Out Tokyo, he described his approach as "defying the notion that you can't create something from nothing." He also has a keen interest in Butoh dancing and collecting ethnic instruments.

Haino's distinctive style extends to his lifestyle: he has sported the same long hair, black clothes and sunglasses throughout his career, and is a strict vegetarian who has refrained from alcohol, tobacco and illegal drugs for his entire life."

-Wikipedia (

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"Aaron Turner is a musician and artist based in Vashon, WA, publicly active since 1995. Most widely recognized for his role as a founding member of the metal bands SUMAC and Isis, and has also participated in projects such as House of Low Culture, Jodis, Old Man Gloom, and Mamiffer. Active primarily as primarily a guitarist, he has maintained an abiding interest in tethering conscious content to subverted uses of the instrument. His output has been informed by lifetime involvement with underground metal/punk, often materializing in highly abstracted forms utilizing improvisation and longform composition. He has collaborated with artists such as Tashi Dorji, Justin Broadrick, Masami Akita, Caspar Brötzmann, Keiji Haino, Daniel Menche, Stephen O'Malley, Kevin Martin/The Bug, James Plotkin and many others. Turner is the founder/art director of Hydra Head Records, and more recently the co-founder SIGE Records with partner Faith Coloccia. Current projects include ongoing work with the bands SUMAC, Mamiffer and Old Man Gloom, as well as solo performances/recordings, and collaborations with Jon Mueller and Jussi Lehtisalo of Circle."

-Aaron Turner Website (

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"Nick Yacyshyn plays drums in Baptists (Southern Lord) and SUMAC (Profound Lore/SIGE Records/Thrill Jockey) and has previously played in Inhaler, Cooked and Eaten, Hard Feelings, The Blood River Band, and A Textbook Tragedy. He also plays guitar in Erosion and co-operates the Rufus Drum Shop in Vancouver, British Columbia."

-Ludwig (

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"Brian Cook (born July 16, 1977) is an American bass guitarist currently in the bands Russian Circles and Sumac. He was also previously a full-time member of Botch, These Arms Are Snakes and Roy, and also a session musician for Mouth of the Architect. Cook is also a freelance journalist and has published a book titled The Second Chair is Meant for You. He is openly gay."

-Wikipedia (

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track listing:

1. Interior Interior Interior Interior - Space - Disgusting Disgusting Disgusting 5:22

2. Now I've gone and done it I spilled holy water (just water) over that thing called healing music.................................. / There was a faint "Tsk"noise over that thing called healing music.................................. / There was a faint "Tsk"noise 15:13

3. Even for just the briefest moment / Keep charging this "expiation" / Plug in to making it slightly better 29:57

4. (First half) / Once, twice, thrice / When you press the third time / Carve esteem and despoliation into your heart (Second half) / Every historical scar / Has been lined up at regular intervals but / Their permeation is different / Beautified with a loss 19:05
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"If solitude breeds stagnation, then Keiji Haino has found a way to keep himself busy for what could be an eternity: Collaborate with everyone and practically anyone. His decades-long career has seen him working with musicians from widely varying continents, generations and musical traditions, each one bending his trademark guitar scrawls and arresting vocal performances into shapes that, by all accounts, they should have never taken. His latest is a follow-up to last year's American Dollar Bill, a collaborative improvisation release with the avant-metal supergroup SUMAC.

While neither party of this meeting is a total stranger to the other's insular world, there was a certain jaggedness to the quartet's first record. If you imagine a metal band working with a 20th century improviser, the resulting music on American Dollar Bill isn't too far off from a one-to-one representation of this fantasy. The total sound was chaotic and aggressively loud, sometimes to the point that any sense of crosstalk was buried underneath what felt like uncontrolled mayhem. Even though their new record, Even for just the briefest moment..., was only recorded a month later, there's a greater sense of comfort with this stylistic blend as well as a more apparent familiarity with each other's language.

The most obvious similarity between Haino's past work and this album comes from his acclaimed collaborations with Jim O'Rourke and Oren Ambarchi, specifically their 2012 release, Imikuzushi. Even when that trio fully leaned into rock music, there was a jazz-influenced levity to Ambarchi's drumming and an free-for-all experimentalism to O'Rourke's bass playing that betrayed any sense of jamming out. SUMAC are significantly more comfortable with straight rock playing. They can certainly stretch out into sprawling, arrhythmic splotches of sound, but the most memorable and successful moments on Even for just the briefest moment... come when the quartet approach headbanging territory, as they do on the pummeling closer, "Once, Twice, Thrice..."

On top of SUMAC's rhythm section, Haino and Aaron Turner's double guitar playing is the album's true spotlight. Each musician has already cultivated such a distinct style that, throughout, it's immediately apparent who's playing what. Turner is mostly concerned with thick, guttural guitar noises, hanging out in his distorted low register and chugging along with his SUMAC counterparts. Haino is, unsurprisingly, the polar opposite: His relatively clean sound, trebly mix and sporadic interjections seem to bounce of his backing trio's murky sound. On "Now I've gone and done it...," SUMAC's sluggish pulse lays the framework for Haino to essentially roam free. The quartet's drummer, Nick Yacyshyn, is especially good at balancing spotlight-stealing moments (like his blistering tom fills on the title track) with a keen awareness of his position as a supporter. Under Haino, he sounds uniquely keyed-in to each accent in the guitarist's phrases, even when others might perceive the shredding as random noise.

Haino ventures furthest away from metal on the album's opening track, "Interior Interior Interior Interior..." He mostly restricts himself to mellow flute playing and, towards the track's conclusion, the taepyeongso, a nasally, double-reed Korean instrument. The SUMAC trio are at their most spacious here, and the effect is spell-binding in its looseness. The group sounds relaxed, with each member giving the others plenty of space to really let their instruments speak. It's not the only moment on the album where the trio play with this kind of delicacy (the euphoric, major-key opening of the 30-minute title track is another significant spot), but it's one of the few sustained moments of calm. Given that "Interior..." is also the shortest track by almost 10 minutes, it reads as a road not taken towards a less physical, more hypnotic album.

In both length and general size of sound, Even for just the briefest moment... is a monumental album. It's certainly an improvement on American Dollar Bill, both in terms of intergroup communication and general cohesiveness in regards to the quartet's blend of free improvisation, jazz and metal. While the release date gaps warp our perception as listeners of the group's musical growth, it's important to remember that this impressive strengthening of a collaborative bond took place in less than 30 days. When-if ever-these four musicians decide to go for round three, this album suggests that they'll be ever closer to reaching the ecstatic peaks that such a talented and creative group could reach."-Connor Lockie, Spectrum Culture

Related Categories of Interest:

Rock and Related
Improvised Rock
Improvised Music
Trio Recordings
Keiji Haino
Unusual Vocal Forms
New in Rock Forms
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