Michio Kurihara - Sunset Notes

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sunsetnotes.jpg

Michio Kurihara - Sunset Notes

10.00

“Some of the coolest trance-inducing musicians are living in Japan . . . and Mr. Kurihara [is] the scene’s Jimmy Page.” – New York Times

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In 2005, Michio Kurihara released his first solo album, Sunset Notes, on Japan’s respected Pedal Records. It was a long time coming for the guitarist, whose musicianship has enlightened such groups as Ghost, Damon & Naomi, White Heaven, The Stars and Yura Yura Teikoku. Kurihara is not one to indulge in the spotlight (in fact, he often literally ducks away from it), and that attitude reflects strongly in his guitar playing style. Never do you hear a straight phrase from him. Instead, he often decorates around the edges, bringing forward a sense of a song’s structure and identity through delicate brush strokes.

The songs on Sunset Notes reflect this approach. While embracing a variety of styles and techniques (a gentle song sung by Pedal pop star Ai Aso, is followed by a snakelike instrumental psych workout, which is followed by a Branca-esque distorted tsunami of guitars, and so on), the album maintains a focus around Kurihara’s ingenius guitar playing. Sunset Notes is a mind-expanding, exciting album — beautifully arranged, precisely executed, and an absolute thrill to hear.

1. Time to Go (2:05)
2. Do Deep-Sea Fish Dream of Electric Moles (5:33)
3. Wind Waltzes (3:31)
4. Pendulum on a G-String: The Last Cicada (6:59)
5. Canon in “C” (C is for Cicada) (1:45)
6 . Twilight Mystery of a Russian Cowboy (3:24)
7. The Wind’s Twelve Quarters (5:14)
8. The Old Man and the Evening Star (7:45)
9. A Boat of Courage (6:01)

Michio Kurihara: guitar, bass, synth
You Ishihara: bass, synth
Ichiro Shibata: drums
Ai Aso: vocals
Soichirou Nakamura: bass, organ

Produced by You Ishihara
Engineered by Soichiro Nakamura

Praise for Michio Kurihara and Sunset Notes:

“The seminal psych guitarist” – Pitchfork

“Some of the coolest trance-inducing musicians are living in Japan . . . and Mr. Kurihara [is] the scene’s Jimmy Page.” – New York Times

“The premier guitarist of the Japanese underground psychedelic movement” – All Music Guide