Fushitsusha
The Caution Appears
[Les Disques Du Soleil Et De L'acier]


These Japanese fellows, and particularly the group's leader - virtuoso guitarist Keiji Haino who's been performing and making music for well over 25 years now, are pure cult legends. Fushitsusha have a number of releases under their collective belts where Haino not only demonstrates his legendary guitar playing, but also his unique vocal abilities. However, "The Caution Appears" is 100% instrumental album, and, from whatever I could gather at Keiji Haino's unofficial web-site, it's one of their more brutal records. It's very hard to classify, but I guess a quirky term like "free-form-avant-psyche-noise" would do the trick, although, even this intricate definition hardly paints a clear enough picture of what this creature really is. This music is...SOMETHING, something grand and powerful. At first it may seem like it's being completely improvised, but from what I understand - it's not. Apparently, Haino and the rest of the band claim to vigorously detest improvisation despite the fact that during his solo ventures, Haino himself has performed numerous improvisational sets and released a number of recordings that capture some of these performances. By the way, Fushitsusha have nothing to do with the ever-popular among underground hipsters Japanese Noise. They don't use any electronic gadgets to conjure their sounds. On the contrary, there is a very traditional line-up of bass/guitar/drums, but how they use these instruments is what makes them such a treasurable entity.

At first, it seems like you are listening to an absolutely incoherent, misguided collection of sounds. Formless drum patterns and off-kilter bass lines are buried underneath chaotic, grating guitar, making it seem like these three musicians are on different planets, completely disregarding each other. But there is a method to this madness, and, as the record progresses, it slowly starts to make sense (or not). Fushitsusha work from the opposite end of how music in general is understood. What at first seems like a pointless noise hodge-podge is gradually brought under control, and that's when an attentive listener will notice how all the instruments cling into one glorious sonic mantra that breaks down all the barriers of space, style, form like a hurricane, creating its very own niche on the verge of total madness and total genius. Who knows, this might be what the ideal freedom of expression bereft of any constrains and turbidness, which inevitably appear with any defined musical genre, would sound like. Haino's intense, prodigious guitar playing (he's got to be one of the most underrated guitar heros of our time) is an undeniable centerpiece and the key to the puzzle. It works in several dimensions simultaneously, it splits the notes into pieces, it enclasps the space and turns it inside out, compresses it and lets it burst. The rest of the instruments back it up in the same unorthodox manner. It's really useless trying to describe it. It has to be heard firsthand. Try to seek this out if you dare to experience something bold and unprecedented. It's not an easy listen. It has to be perceived with a different mindset than the music you normally listen to, but if you will be able to grasp what it is Fushitsusha are doing, and how they are doing it, this music will be as rewarding and mindblowing as anything you have ever experienced.


2000 boris