Sunday, August 9, 2009

Acid Mothers Sunday Vol 17: Ohkami No Jikan (LA-026)

The Acid Mothers Temple connection to this La Musica cassette is a tad more tenuous than most of the previous La Musica titles I put up. Basically Nanjo Asahito has kept the line up of this group secret, as Alan Cumming says here:

the group have only properly released a couple of tracks on barely distributed compilations, and here both recording date and line-up are kept deliberately quiet (though this release probably includes Kawabata on guitar).

Alan is talking about the awesome CD Mort Nuit on Fractal Records, but it applies to all Ohkami releases in general. I tend to believe Kawabata is on this release because his sister, Sachiko did the art work for the cassette.

That said there is definitely some confusion regarding LA-026. I bought this either at a High Rise show in 1999 or from Eclipse Records around the same time. I am pretty sure the title was listed as Israel, which makes sense as it contains two versions of the Ohkami signature song, "Israel." I had been trading this as Israel for years but when I looked up this release on the La Musica Tape list as I was putting together this post, things got a bit more hazy. The tape included here, LA-026, is listed in the catalog as Ten no tsumi (Heaven's crime). Israel is listed as LA-020. Things get a tad more complicated when we read the liners of LA-026:

...Members ofmany Japanese underground groups, including Fushitsusha, Les Rallizes Denudes and Kousokuya have participated with Nanjo in Okami No Jikan, pursuing different musical approaches. Depending upon the members and the concept, the sound of this unique group varies dramatically. The one constant is the vibrations emitted by Nanjo. As a psychedelic group that explores all music, from heavy, dark sounds to jazz, contemporary and experimental, Ohkami No Jikan occupies an important position in the Japanese underground scene. On this, their first album, they concentrate on the heaviness of minimal music. Nanjo's engineering and production work questions conventional recording wisdom. Floating aesthetes.

Ok, so.. whew. That is what the liners of LA-026 say, but they say "first album" which would be LA-020, not LA-026. And then, to make it more confusing... these same liners are repeated on Mort Nuit. That said, these versions of "Israel" do not sound like the one on Mort Nuit. I honestly don't know what to think, but here is what the La Musica catalog has to say about LA-026:

Unreleased recordings from the time when the name was used to signify a gatheringplace for disparate musical forms. A mystic work, featuring members of Hadaka no Rallizes and Fushitsusha, that embraces esthetic, mysterious surreal vibrations.

And here they are on LA-020:

Psychedelic group that explores "stasis" and "motion", both actively and philosophically. This includes the final tak of "Israel", a track which they have recorded time and time again. The cool acid heavy sound that reaches the level of the sublime was achieved only after exhausting every other musical form during recording. This is the result of a consciousness prepare to sacrifice and destroy everything it holds dear.

All of this leads me to believe that the tape in question, is actually LA-020, but since the sleeve says LA-026 we will stick with that.
So there you go. The music is somber and dark, sometimes some heavily effected sheets of guitar noises swell the pond and make this one bump into the red on occasion, but it is definitely one of my fave Nanjo releases no matter what it is or who is on it. In November 1998 when Nanjo toured the USA with High Rise, but would open the shows as a version of Ohkami No Jikan with himself on guitar. I know I have a set of theirs with Ed Farnsworth from Bardo Pond (at the time) on drums performing at the sadly missed Astrocade, a show I got to witness that was just insanely awesome and some of the most psychedelic guitar playing ever, from Nanjo on a Rickenbacker no less! I will post that in the future.

I am still not sure what format to use for these, but this time I went for 256kps mp3s. Enjoy.

Ohkami No Jikan - LA-026


masonoise said...

Cool, thanks. I haven't transferred this one to digital yet myself. The thing about a lot of these groups, like Ohkami no Jikan, Splendor Mystic Solis, etc is that Nanjo would get people together and then later decide what "group" name it fitted, based on the results. I played with Ohkami no Jiken once or twice here in SF when Nanjo came over, and one of the shows ended up being released by him as a CDR under a different name! (I didn't find out about it until a friend told me he bought one...heh) So you just never know with Nanjo.

nicepooperzine said...

Hey Mason, thanks for the comment. I was actually going to post on your blog asking if you had any ideas on this. I have one of those 10 CDR La Musica boxsets and you are playing on two discs of it as Ohkami and another group! haha! oh brother. For future reference, my next post of La Musica stuff is gonna be the Ohkami No Jikan "Black Tape," but I don't have the cover for that one. Keep me in the loop if you post any La Musica tapes. wish I had bought more at the time, but who knew Nanjo would be so hard to find! thanks! Andy

Anonymous said...


this actually changed my life


nicepooperzine said...

awesome, glad you like it metek!

LeeBx said...

does anyone have this CD set:

and maybe a link to JUST the Ohkami No Jikan track? if that's alright to ask - if not feel free to say so.

Mort Nuit is incredible.


nicepooperzine said...

Hey Leebx, totally cool to post that here. Unfortunately I don't have that set, hopefully someone else will come up with link. Thanks for reading.