Kikagaku Moyo

Kikagaku Moyo EP

Written by: BV on 14/07/2013 17:03:13

Tokyo-based Kikagaku Moyo is a ’free-music’ band according to their own personal description – my definition though, is much more manageable as they are, without a doubt, a psychedelic rock band with space rock influences. Following in the footsteps of legendary Yonin Bayashi and the more recent Acid Mothers Temple, Kikagaku Moyo is seemingly hell-bent on showing the world that psych is also quite interesting in that particular part of the world. - But is it interesting, then?

Well, as far as album opener “Can You Imagine Nothing” goes, it certainly is an interesting piece of music. Starting out with a mellow folk-ish chord progression on acoustic guitar you instantly get that really chilled out vibe that often comes off psych-releases. As the instrumentation gets slightly more exotic with sitars and tablas lurking in the background there is no question in my mind that this is a quite beautiful piece of music, and a genuine folk-psych gem in its own right.

With “Tree Smoke” the chilled out vibe carries on but with a more driven attitude. The psych is turned up a notch as the electric instrumentation and the effects-pedals start making their appearances. The hallucinogenic wah-wah sounds ring beautifully and complement the minimalist soundscape rather well, as the hypnotic bass-line ensures the constant grounding point for an otherwise dreamy and floating composition. – As far as instrumental pieces go, this one is really up there with the more hypnotic of the sorts and provides a valuable alternative to the fuzz-laden escapades of the space rock genre, for instance.

As we approach the end of the EP with the fourth track (out of five), “Lazy Stoned Monk”, there is indeed a lazy vibe to the soundscape. Driven primarily by eerie sound effects throughout the nearly five minutes long piece, the listener is taken on a sonic journey that, whilst not providing any tactile melody, provides a beautifully structured floating piece for all the listeners that can relate to the feeling of being either lazy, stoned, or a monk, I guess.

This particular release isn’t a traditional revivalist effort, rather it is an experiment in the free form of psychedelia, pushing the boundaries of acoustic elements and sound effects whilst remaining true to the heritage laid down by the likes of Yonin Bayashi, Acid Mothers Temple and, to name something a bit more familiar, perhaps Hawkwind and some early seventies Pink Floyd as well. The effort is quite successful in its endeavor which leads me to grade it rather favorably. I do hope they see it fit to release more.

Download: Lazy Stoned Monk, Tree Smoke, Can You Imagine Nothing
For The Fans Of: Acid Mothers Temple, Yonin Bayashi, Hawkwind

Release Date 01.05.2013

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