One of the most soulful sessions we've ever heard from Japanese pianist Masabumi Kikuchi – a brilliant quintet outing that features some really great work on tenor and soprano sax! Kikuchi's piano is usually enough to grab our attention, but the album's got a great added bonus in the presence of Kosuke Mine on soprano sax and Hideo Miyata on tenor – both players whose horns bring in some added sharpness to the date, and further underscore the spiritual elements in Kikuchi's music – almost with the same mix of reeds and driving rhythms you'd find in the post-Coltrane work of Elvin Jones. Titles include "Green Dance", "Bell", "Admire But Destest", "Gin Kai", and "Drizzling Rain".
Heavy electric piano from Masabumi Kikuchi – played here on two side-long tracks that really stretch out! The album's a live one, and features Kikuchi working with a sextet – a great lineup that features soprano sax, bass, and drums – plus some added organ and keyboards next to Masabumi's own keyboards – especially nice on one track that also features piano! There's a sensitivity to these tunes that's wonderful – a hint at the straighter Japanese trio mode that would dominate later in the 70s, but played with some of the best boldness that scene was bringing to its work at the start of the decade. Titles are both originals – "Yellow Carcass In The Blue" and "Dancing Mist" – both with a sound as evocative as their titles!
Masabumi Kikuchi plays some really great electric piano here – often using the album with loud, bold tones that lie somewhere between Joe Zawinul's work with Cannonball Adderley and Miles Davis! The album's an extremely sweet electric side from the Japanese keyboardist – and it also features great work on reeds from Kosuke Mine, who plays both alto and soprano sax on the set – the latter with a wonderfully soulful, lyrical tone. Other players include Motohiko Hino on drums and Hideo Ichikawa on additional electric piano and organ – and titles include "Dancing Mist", "Thanatos", "Yellow Carcass In The Sun", "EJ", "My Companion", and "Puzzle Ring".
A key example of why the Japanese scene was so great at the start of the 70s – really mindblowing work from keyboardist Masabumi Kikuchi, and every bit as wonderful as some of our favorite American sides from the time! Kikuchi acoustic piano with a warmly soulful sensitivity – alongside the Fender Rhodes of Masahiro Kikuchi, who has a hard-edged sound that almost takes off from Joe Zawinul's use of the instrument, then soars into even mightier territory. The style is somewhat loose at times, but never too free – and the group here is a sextet that also includes amazing alto from Kosuke Mine – an excellent player who's never gotten his due on this side of the Pacific. Titles include "Love Token", "Tenacious Prayer Forever", "Roaming In Darkness", "Young Bloods", and "Piece To Peace".