Review Summary: Minimalist buttfuckery out the ass
What we have here is the congregation of Japan's electroacoustic improvisation/onkyo scene collaborating with each other to create a serial of stumbling sounds that focus on sound as a musical miracle in itself - enough so that the general perception of music as an expressive art form is the last thing on these players' minds. Sine wave-specialist and contact-mic nut Sachiko M reprises her role as an ultra-minimalist onkyo artist alongside no-input mixing board virtuoso Toshimaru Nakamura and the electroacoustic prodigy Otomo Yoshihide. It's a wonderful combination because neither of their sounds stray from the genre's comfort zones, but at the same time, none of these artists's sounds are that much alike. For the album's near two hour runtime, Sachiko's entire premise is built off varying sine waves, often drilling holes into your head or creating crisp, modern ping
(etc.) combos. Nakamura, on the other hand, churns out buzzing feedback from said device-of-choice. And, well, Yoshihide focuses on virtually everything else in the onkyo spectrum.
Notably, Nakamura is better than ever, sans a few solo drops (even about six or seven years after the album's drop). With Good Morning Good Night
, he's gained a newfound sense of control with his volatile mixer, which can be accredited to the trio's line-up. Each of the members is very intent on listening to the others, allowing for a surprisingly focused work. Hell, the tracks even follow the pattern of a day in some aspects. "Good Morning" is a stumbly affair that takes its time to gain speed, while "Good Evening" takes its predecessor's hustle-and-bustle and winds down into a more calm set of sines and static. The second installment, which is by far the shortest (eight minutes), is a special highlight, as it moves with life, coloring pictures of city scenes. People moving to work, going to lunch, perhaps a short festival before everything winds down in preparation for the night scene. This is probably (and yes, I am presuming here) the reason why this otherwise dispensable collection of sounds works so well as it is. It flows naturally, almost like the musicians are having a conversation with their electronics. It's really actually very interesting, the whole being much more than the sum of its parts.