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Minami Deutsch - Minami Deutsch (2015) review



This Japanese duo feature strong motorific beats a la Can and Neu! which propel their mostly instrumental psych into krautrock territory. Fuzzy, speaker-shredding guitars and bubbling electronics highlight opener ‘Vocalism Ali – Forever Takemitsu’, while a simple, Moe Tuckerish tap-tap-tap (on a dodgy drum kit, no less) and hypnotic, chanting vocals (in Japanese) drive ‘Futsu Ni Ikirenai’ into your skull – it’s like listening to Damo Suzuki fronting The Velvet Underground. And then they break out a blistering fuzz solo that’ll fry your brain like mosquitos hitting a bug zapper.
The album’s shortest track, ‘Terra Recipe’ is also its most accessible and least sonically challenging. There’s still a monotonic riff on a crap drumkit, but the guitar histrionics are kept to a minimum and the pleasant melody bears repeat listens. Whether you will survive several rounds with the two-part ‘Übergleich’ will depend on your tolerance for guitar pyrotechnics banging off the walls while a freight train drum beat and throbbing bass line ping pongs around the inside of your skull. If you’re prepared to turn yourself into a human bobblehead, by all means jump right in. Unfortunately, the band decided to insert the otherwise phenomenally tight as the proverbial monkey’s bum ‘Sunrise, Sunset’ in between parts 1 and 2, so the effect is lost unless you program your CD to splice the two tracks together. But ‘Sunrise, Sunset’ almost sounds like a completely different band: the drums are acceptably sedate, the crystalline guitar runs are hypnotic and inventive – somewhere between Michael Karoli and Robert Smith – and the tune doesn’t overstay its welcome. Clearly the album highlight, it’s too bad they didn’t properly sequence it before or after ‘Übergleich’ instead of in between.

Review made by Jeff Penczak/2015
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