Sunday, April 13, 2008

YUGEN-LABIRINTO D'ACQUA (2006, CD, ITALY)

The first album by this Italian/international avant-progressive supergroup, which has been eagerly anticipated. Their stated influences should tell you all you need to know: Satie, Stravinsky, Schoenberg, Cage, Reich, Zappa, Henry Cow, Gentle Giant, King Crimson, Univers Zero! Very very good stuff for fans of 'rehearsal-intensive, complex avant-progressive rock. "Yugen is a musical project born during autumn of 2004 from an idea by Francesco Zago and Marcello Marinone. Four years after the end of The Night Watch, , Francesco Zago begins thinking about a synthesis between rock (progressive and RIO-style oriented) and chamber music. Thanks to the ideas and fundamental support of Marcello Marinone, the project takes its shape from a few chamber compositions, enriched with electric sounds and a rock rhythm section. The name of the project became Yugen, a japanese word – impossible to translate in its precise meaning – which expresses the aesthetic canon of japanese art, as haiku in poetry or Noh in theatre. Between December of 2004 and January of 2005 the first demo of Yugen was produced. Diego Donadio, formerly drummer of The Night Watch, contributes to the drums arrangements. In February, during an extemporaneous jam session in Tradate, the keyboard player Paolo Botta (Franch TV) and swiss saxophone player Markus Stauss (Spaltklang, Ulterior Lux) joined the group. Then Stephan Brunner, who plays electric bass in Spaltklang, and reed player Peter Schmid (Evan Parker, Vinny Golia) accept to play with Yugen. In the meantime, new compositions come out: Zago writes little acoustic pieces. To satisfy the complexity and richness of the arrangements, other instrumentalist join the band: the percussionist Massimo Mazza, Giuseppe Olivini (OZ, Contrapplugged) plays harpsichord, the classical players Maurizio Fasoli (piano), Elia Mariani (violin) and Marco Sorge (clarinets). Last arrivals, but not less important, the drummer Mattia Signò, Tommaso Leddi (Stormy Six) and U.S. drummer Dave Kerman (Thinking Plague, 5uu’s, Present, Blast, Ahvak….). The recordings began in June of 2005 and they continued until January of 2006. During the following months, Udi Koomran (Avhak, Present, Thinking Plague) worked on mixing and mastering." (Wayside)
Fantastic first working draft of Francesco Zago, "Yugen" is, in my opinion, today one of the best progressive group of the world. An incredible blend of progressive/avant-garde/contemporary-chamber rock. A masterpiece!!! click here
myspace: http://www.myspace.com/yugenband
Buy this cd!!

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

i'm with a theater comapny in san francisco named theatre of yugen. we are in our 30th year... we base our training in traditional noh and kyogen, but consider ourselves experimental, avant garde fusion theater artists. yugen is indeed a elusive word to define. here are some:

Yu: deep, quiet, other-worldly
gen: subtle, profound, dark

(yu) deep, dark, unfathomable; (gen) delicate and subtle, but together the term represents a profound, moving, mysterious beauty/the sublime.

Yugen - from the chinese to describe an object lying underwater too deep to see or comprehend

check us out if you're ever in san francisco!

orphee said...

Great post, thanks!!!!