Review Summary: Japanese prog that offers you a ticket to the other-side by staring into the eyes of a pipe smoking sloth. Far out.
Evolution and indeed revolution is open to all manner of inventiveness and during the course of the early '70s many a band were taking rock into new un-chartered territory using an amalgamation of styles that was marketed as 'prog.'
The period produced albums that are regarded as timeless pieces of art, the pinnacle of rock and to many have never been bettered. However like all good revolutions things that are of utmost importance pass unnoticed and here, slowly creeping through the desert is a red eyed, pipe smoking mammal that will forever impose itself on your soul if you care to look into its eyes and take the journey.
A burst of mellotron keys starts the album off with a statement of intent that instantly gives way into the second piece 'Sora to Kumo' or Earth and Clouds a tune that holds its Doors influenced sound close to its heart as guitarist and vocalist Katsutoshi Morizono ebbs his way into the groove with a voice that evokes a youth spent in solitary reflection sat under cherry blossom trees and a guitar accompaniment that builds a bridge into wonderment.
This skilled guitar playing infuses the track Omatsuri into a further twelve minute nostalgia trip that soars and again tips its hat to early Floyd and countless others however is entirely its own thing and never fails to captivate. The highlight and title track of the album then follows and it is a blast of psychedelic rock that will have you shaking your head in the belief that mystical mammals are hammering and forging the essence of mind melting prog rock classics.
The album concludes with an ode to a ping-pong ball and despite the ridiculousness of that premise what we have is a piece of instrumental brilliance rounding off a 35minute journey to the other side. Once completed and you are thrown back into reality your only requirement is to press play again in order to experience the wonderment of this essential record a further time and set out on the journey for eternity.