Saturday, September 14, 2019

MASAYUKI TAKAYANAGI and NEW DIRECTION UNIT – Eclipse (LP-1975)




Label: Iskra Records – ISKRA-001
Format: Vinyl , LP, Album / Country: Japan / Released: 1975
Limited edition of 100 copys
Style: Free Improvisation, Free Jazz
Recorded March 14, 1975 in Tokyo, Japan.
Photography By, Design [Cover Design] – Kazuharu Fujitani
Engineer – Mikio Aoki
Producer – Nihon Gendai Jazz Ongaku Kenkyukai , Satoru Obara , Yoshiaki Kamei
Matrix / Runout (Side A runout, stamped): ISK 001A 111 +V D
Matrix / Runout (Side B runout, stamped): ISK 001B 111 +

side 1:
A1 - First Session I (Gradually Projection) .............................................................. 10:47
A2 - First Session II (Gradually Projection) ............................................................... 9:07

side 2:
B  -  Second Session (Mass Projection) .................................................................. 25:23

Personnel:
Masayuki Takayanagi – electric guitar
Kenji Mori – alto saxophone, flute, recorder
Nobuyoshi Ino – electric bass, electric contrabass
Hiroshi Yamazaki – drums, percussion

One of the rarest of Takayanagi's LPs, originally released on Iskra Records in a limited edition of only 100 copies.
Thanks to the kindness of my Irish friend Mr. DILLON who sent me LP and all the material I needed for this post, you have the opportunity to hear what this rare vinyl pearl sounds like.

The 2006 CD reissue, that I have (PSF Records - PSFD-8025), I only now notice after listening to the LP, it produces sharper sound and has a certain acceleration in rpm relative to the original, which contributes to the shortening of the compositions, but on the other hand it enhances the dynamics. Of course, that they didn't write it anywhere, but any ear can notice that difference if given the opportunity of comparison.

Apart from my usual art presentation of the album, I did almost nothing on the soundtrack: cleaned the tape from clicks, minimized noise,  implemented normalized to -0.1 dB and made the usual compression.
The Japanese have done it masterfully, the LP is so well recorded that you can hardly believe it's 1975. Sounds perfect! It sounds better than a CD that has a slightly raw, more aggressive sound to the ears.

Pleasant listening.

Note:
A small change was deliberately made on the front cover of the album which has no effect on the quality of the original design. In this way, I protect my work.


Review:
Masayuki Takayanagi - Eclipse (Japanese title: Shinshoku) has always been the rarest of Masayuki Takayanagi's records. The album was recorded in May 1975 by his New Directions group just three weeks after the monumental "April is the Cruellest Month" set. Legendary free jazz label ESP Disk was due to release "April..."., so, expecting heavy demand for the overseas ablum, Iskra cut the pressing size for Eclipse from 300 to just 100. In the end, ESP went belly up, and "April is the Cruellest Month", had to wait until the nineties for a CD release. Eclipse became a holy grail for Japanese collectors with copies changing hands for up to $3000, and since the master-tapes had mysteriously vanished it seemed supremely unlikelyto ever be reissued. However, by some sort of miracle, the original masters were unearthed 2005, and ordinary human beings can at last revel in the tense, explosivedynamics of the classic recording. Fantastic free jazz of varying intensities, led by Takayanagi's searing yet supple guitar. His supporting ensemble is more than just sidemen, they skillfully create enigmatic new worlds through twisted manipulation of forms and sounds.



The first song, a wandering yet lingering "First Session I (Gradually Projection)" sketch, is displaced by the (subtle?) forward thrust and scrambling parry of the second. Indeed, "First Session II (Gradually Projection)" feels like running a gauntlet of vaguely irritated chin-strokers aiming the whips of their guitar, reeds, bass, drums at your gut in slo-mo confusion. It all speeds up until it's all spun out, dragging the damaged undercarriage down the musical highway. Part three, "Second Session (Mass Projection)", starts as a full-on drag race for instrumental supremacy, until the electric squall of the guitar corrals the cats into a semblance of advancement. Everyone gets their blows in, but the maestro looms in the background, ready to chastise into (decidedly minimal) discipline when needed. It's a long run, so the pace is set by the flaying percussion, but the tone is measured in a strangely stuttering, energetic pace. Weirdly affecting... yes-yes, this is a bloody masterpiece.


This post exists thanks to Mr. Dillon.



If you find it, buy this album!

65 comments:

  1. MASAYUKI TAKAYANAGI and NEW DIRECTION UNIT – Eclipse (LP-1975)
    Vinyl Rip/FLAC-96kHz+Artwork (516.53 MB)

    Dear friends,
    if you are interested in listening to this precious gift from Mr. Dillon, request a link via:

    differentper@gmail.com

    E N J O Y ! ! !

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  2. Great sounding rip for a free jazz masterclass. Thanks a lot Vitko and Mr. Dillon.

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  3. Thank you, You may be aware that Black Editions are planned some vinyl reissues of Mr Takayanagi's work soon. More info is here https://www.blackeditionsgroup.com/takayanagi-announcement

    Thank you Mr Dillon, for your loan of this LP

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  4. Thanks for this good news, K. P. This information will certainly be appreciated by many of Mr. Takayanagi's admirers.
    Cheers!

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  5. Vitko and Mr Dillon,many many thanks!!!!!!!!!

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  6. Thank-you very much Vitko & Mr Dillon

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  7. thank you Vitko and Mr. Dillon...it´s Takayanagi and Unit alright...cheers and cheers...

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  8. Many thanks for the link. Music is amazing

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  9. Thank you for all you do! This is great!

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  10. Thank you for sharing this great album, Mr. Dillon. And thank you Vitko, for your work on the project. Outstanding, as usual.

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  11. incredible. thanks a lot. the most hard and heavy to dig is the third fragment (Mass Projection). have to listen it again.

    anyway, thanks a lot.

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  12. Listening now and it's a true masterpiece. Thanks so much Vitko.

    Mabu

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  13. Amazing share, thanks a million Vitko!

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  14. another interesting listening
    Hōryū​-​ji (法隆寺) by SAkira Sakata, Christos Yermenoglou, Giovanni di Domenico, Giotis Damianidis (May 2019)
    https://elnegocito.bandcamp.com/album/h-ry-ji
    more pacified, less passionate sonics, ar regarding to the Buddhist temple.

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  15. Thanks, I didn't know about this.

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  16. MANY THANKS AGAIN FOR THE MUSIC. SPECIALLY THIS SPECIAL RECORDS!

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  17. Thank you both so much for this new opportunity to listen; much obliged!

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  18. Rara avis indeed - hurricane-force Takayanagi, excellent transcription - what more could you want? Many thanks.

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  19. Many thanks for the link! Artist new to me, but this looks very interesting for guitar lovers - and not only!

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  20. Hi Vitko, thanks for another gem. I have a request, incredibly I can't find on any blog, one of my favorite albums: "Nat Adderley - Calling Out Loud", can you help me?
    Thanks in advance

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    Replies
    1. I'm sorry, but I don't have that album. I can inquire a little bit around, there are friends here to help, so .......... who knows?

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    2. Here is a link for Calling Out Loud (flac):
      http://www.mediafire.com/?34j5s22yu39r6r5/NA-69-COL.rar

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  21. Thank you very, very much, Mr. Dillon. Much appreciated.

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  22. Already had the cd reissue, but this sounds better. Thank you very much!

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  23. Some beautiful mysteries here.At times I hear close interplay between the players while at other times all out red zone sonic assault by a very advanced guitarist.Thanks to all involved in the share.I intend to check out more of Mr. Takayanagi's music.Any recommendations?

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  24. Thanks for this album, as well as all the other sonic goodies you made possible in the past! Real Encyclopedia of the Audio Segment!

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  25. thank you very much! Don't know about this music, but always very surprised!

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  26. Listening to this right now and riding the waves on the sea of sound. Thank you for Mr Dillon and Vitko.

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  27. Thank you for great music.

    Proud of Japanese.

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  28. Thank you very much!!!

    My brain is Burn out.

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  29. it's *C*O*S*M*I*C*!*!
    thank you

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  30. Thank you for the upload and link. I'm looking forward to absorbing this rare gem.

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  31. No words can describe my gratitude.
    This is an excellent post - review and gives to us, common folk, the ability to enjoy such rare gems!
    Many thanks to Mr Dillon for sharing this treasure

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  32. Vitko, thanks so much!

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  33. The playing on here is absolutely FEROCIOUS ! Thank you guys so much for the great opportunity to hear it !!

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  34. Many thanks to Vitko and Mr Dillon for this gem.

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  35. I am so thankful to have this. Thank you so much for sharing it!
    --gilhodges

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  36. listening to the first cut right now and really liking the gritty ambiance of the playing.
    Thanks, Vitkoa\

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  37. Very nice Vitko and Dillon! Very nice indeed!!

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  38. Thank you! Extraordinary stuff.

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  39. outstanding weirdness! huge thanks for your sustained output of rare free jazz treasures!!

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  40. Eclipse is one of the several turning points in Takayanagi's journey, on the same Lp both the old and the new that was coming (Mass Projection).We can follow Takayanagi through many years and recordings from the sixties to the nineties, it is a really great amount of music. As it happened with Coltrane not everyone will follow him to his last more experimental period where his wonderful guitar became something else, turning in electronic sounds of stunning intensity and beauty, but those who will do it will discover a truly great artist.

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  41. Thank you for sharing. You are really helping broadening my musical horizon and I really appreciate it

    Simone

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  42. Thank you so much for the download. Looking forward to listening!

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  43. Thanks for the link, and your work, this blog is the best i've ever found.

    S.

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  44. Thanks a lot Vitko - much appreciated

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  45. This is wonderful - thanks so much!

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  46. Thank you for sharing this most unique and excellent recording!

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  47. Thanks again Vitko and Mr. Dillon. I want to be in a band that plays this music. K.

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  48. Thank you, looking forward to hearing this!

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