Kenso - Esoptron

Year of Release: 1999
Label: King Record Co. Ltd.
Catalog Number: KICS 741
Format: CD
Total Time: 46:14:00

For those used to the prog-jazz leanings of Kenso you'll be surprised when the first track on this disk starts - Kenso have taken a page or two out of the Led Zeppelin song book, though track one actually sounds more like LTE (or at least Petrucci) jamming on Zeppelin material. Though Zep isn't the only influence in there, as you can add a dash of ELP and a dash of metal, too. Oh, and then about seven minutes in, you'll get blues guitar becoming a Hendrix/Page hybrid becoming a Lifeson/Lee/Peart-like workout.

Track 2 ["Negaikanearu Kodomo Wo Tsureteyukou"] begins with some gentle jazz guitar (with a slight Page colouring), but is mostly Rippingtons-eque jazz-rock, only to pick up the pace and become something of an UK-neo/IQ-like progressive jam, bulking up again into a Rush-like mode ("YYZ" comes to mind)with ELP like keys. And yet, it all hangs together, is well played and makes for a very dynamic release.

Track 5 ["Chishiki Wo Koete"] is atmospheric keyboard swirls over electronic percussion with ethereal voices floating about - kind of a mellow bliss-out, as you can imagine psycheldelic twirling patterns dazzling you on the ceiling. "Gips," (track 6) is Black Moon-period ELP with heavy percussion and dark keys, contrasted by more keyboards jamming on top.

"The Egg of Joe" is so eerily like "A Whiter Shade of Pale," I had to listen carefully to see that it wasn't in fact the Procol Harem classic with a different name. When the high-pitched keys take the lead, the track becomes a bit discordant?not entirely pleasing at that point, though it's brief.

"Chronos Ouranos Esoptron" is Middle-Eastern meets Peter Gabriel meets early Genesis - I don't know how else to describe it, except to add that there's a bit of a techno beat to it toward the end.

"Release Yourself" has an Eric Clapton/Cream feel to it ? I'm thinking of "Crossroads" here.

Overall a really good release, but because of they seem to be wearing influences on their sleeve - or rather, on their fingertips - not an entirely original one.

Kojinteki Kikyu (8:59) / Negaikanearu Kodomo Wo Tsureteyukou (5:14) / Kohan Nite (1:20) / Zaiya Kara No Kikan (5:01) / Chishiki Wo Koete (2:20) / Gips (4:03) / The Egg of Joe (4:05) / Chronos Ouranos Esoptron (2:12) / suo No Hiai (6:14) / Release Yourself (4:27) / Kiraku Ni Ikouze (2:19)

Yoshihisa Shimizu - guitars
Kenichi Oguchi - keyboards
Kenichi Mitsuda - keyboards
Shunji Saegusa - bass
Masayuki Muraishi - drums

Kenso (1980)
Kenso II (1982)
Kenso III (1983)
In Concert (1986)
Self Portrait (1987)
Sparta (1989)
Yume No Oka (1991)
Live 92 (1993)
Early Live Volume 1 (1994)
Early Live Volume 2 (1995)
Zaiya Live (1996)
In The West (1999)
Esoptron (1999)
76/77 (2000)
Ken Son Gu Su: 25th Anniversary (2000)
Fabulis Mirabilibus De Bombycosi Scriptis (2002)
Chilling Heat (2005)
Utsuroi Yuku Mono (2006)

Ha-Re-Ki (2003) (DVD)
Ayr (2004) (DVD)

Genre: Fusion-Jazz Fusion

Origin JP

Added: March 1st 2000
Reviewer: Stephanie Sollow
Artist website:
Hits: 880
Language: english


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