Wednesday, May 13, 2020

TAJ MAHAL TRAVELLERS – 1 - August 1974 (Nippon Columbia Co. / 2LP-1975)




Label: Columbia ‎– OP-7147~8-N
Format: 2 × Vinyl, LP / Country: Japan / Released: May 1975
Gatefold-cover / Originally / First Pressed
Style: Experimental, Free Improvisation
Recorded On August 19th, 1974 At The Nippon Columbia Studio No.1 In Tokyo.
Album design : Michiro KIMURA
Engineering : Kaoru LIDA
Produced by Yoshiharu KAWAGUCHI
Liner Notes – Yuji TAKAHASHI
1975 Nippon Columbia Co., Ltd.
Matrix / Runout (A-Side runout): OP-7147~8-N / N-357-449 - 1
Matrix / Runout (B-Side runout): OP-7147~8-N / N-357-450 - 2
Matrix / Runout (C-Side runout): OP-7147~8-N / N-357-451 - 3
Matrix / Runout (D-Side runout): OP-7147~8-N / N-357-452 - 4

Issued with printed innersleeve (top half text in Japanese, bottom half: liner notes by Yuji Takahashi / verso: TMT biography).

side 1:
A - 1 ......................................................................................................................... 19:55

side 2:
B - 2 ......................................................................................................................... 21:30

side 3:
C - 3 ........................................................................................................................ 23:35

side 4:
D - 4 ........................................................................................................................ 23:30

TAJ MAHAL TRAVELLERS
Takehisa KOSUGI – electric violin, harmonica, voice, etc.
Ryo KOIKE – electric double-bass, suntool, voice, etc.
Yukio TSUCHIYA – bass-tuba, percussion, etc.
Seiji NAGAI – trumpet, synthesizer mini-korg, timpani, etc.
Michihiro KIMURA – voice, percussion, mandolin, etc.
Tokio HASEGAWA – voice, percussion, etc.
Kinji HAYASHI – electronic technique
Guest performer : Hirokazu SATO – percussion, voice, etc.

High quality of the monumental work ''1 - August 1974'' by Japanese experimental music ensemble Taj Mahal Travellers.



In April 1972 a group of Japanese musicians set off from Rotterdam in a Volkswagen van. As they crossed Europe and then made their way through Asia they made music in a wide range of locations. They also paid close attention to the changing scene and to differing ways of life. Midway through May they reached their destination, the iconic Taj Mahal on the bank of the Yamuna river in Agra, India. The Taj Mahal Travellers had fulfilled physically the promise of the name they adopted when they formed in 1969. But their music had always been a journey, a sonic adventure designed to lead any listener’s imagination into unfamiliar territory.



The double album August 1974 was their second official release. The first July 15, 1972 is a live concert recording, but on 19th August 1974 the Taj Mahal Travellers entered the Tokyo studios of Nippon Columbia and produced what is arguably their definitive statement. The electronic dimension of their collective improvising was coordinated, as usual, by Kinji Hayashi. Guest percussionist Hirokazu Sato joined long-term group members Ryo Koike, Seiji Nagai, Yukio Tsuchiya, Michihiro Kimura, Tokio Hasegawa and Takehisa Kosugi.

The enigmatic Takehisa Kosugi, whose soaring electric violin was such a vital element in their music, had been a pioneer of free improvisation and intermedia performance art with Group Ongaku at the start of the 60s. Later in that decade, before launching the Taj Mahal Travellers, he had become known internationally through his association with the Fluxus art movement. During the mid-70s the Travellers disbanded and while his colleagues more or less stopped performing as musicians Kosugi continued to reach new audiences across the course of several decades as a composer, regular performer and musical director for the acclaimed Merce Cunningham Dance Company.




August 1974 captures vividly the characteristic sound of the Taj Mahal Travellers, haunting tones from an unusual combination of instruments, filtered through multiple layers of reverb and delay. Their music has strong stylistic affinities with the trippy ambience of cosmic and psychedelic rock, but the Taj Mahal Travellers were tuning in to other vibrations, drawing inspiration from the energies and rhythms of the world around them rather than projecting some alternative reality. Films of rolling ocean waves often provided a highly appropriate backdrop for their lengthy improvised concerts. 
This is truly electric music for the mind and body.



If you find it, buy this album!

38 comments:

  1. TAJ MAHAL TRAVELLERS – 1 - August 1974 (2LP-1975)
    Vinyl Rip/FLAC-176+Artwork (1.07 GB)


    You can get the download link exclusively through:
    differentper@gmail.com


    Regards.

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    Replies
    1. Thanks a lot! Great choice as always...

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    2. Wow. I have listened to my Phoenix bootleg version of this album many times. Listening to your rip of the original vinyl is a revelation. Amazing! Thank you so much Vitko.

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  2. listen now!...ENJOYING A LOT!...
    BIG THX!...

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  3. this looks great, as usual. thanks!

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  4. Thanks Vitko, some psychedelic sunshine on a cold English morning! BW Chris

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  5. Great post Vitko - thanks very much !

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  6. Looks very exciting! Thanks a lot!

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  7. always a great post! thanks!

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  8. Many thanks for the post. I will check the video on youtube.

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  9. This is the stuff, wonderful music, sounds much better than the dodgy cd I have ,many thanks. John C.

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  10. This will drag you into a different world!

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  11. This looks to be another excellent discovery. Thank you, Vitko!

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  12. thanks Vitko new to me, keen to check it out

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  13. vitko!... thanx really a lot for all the GOOD VIBRATIONS you offer us!!! ermanno

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  14. Great post. I'm new here. I will check the other posts. Thank you very much.

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  15. thanks for this great album, my favorite by this wonderful combo of japanese musicians.

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  16. many thanks for sharing such great music

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  17. Another nice discovery. As always, thank you dear Vitko for another rather obscure japanese rarity. Reminds me in parts to the early seventies "Kosmische Kuriere". I played the album several times from start to finish in one take in a darkened room with a pair of good headphones. That gave me a intensive new listening experience.

    Uwe

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  18. Thank you Vitko. This is a fantastic site and collection of music. I've been curious about the Taj Mahal Travellers for decades. Nice rip of the vinyl!

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  19. Excelente, agradeço a postagem.

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  20. This looks great. Thank You very much!

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  21. I cannot thank you enough for this glorious post!

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  22. Iconic and historically very important

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  23. Thanks Vitko for the post!
    Another amazing album that I didn't know about

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  24. Thank you, Vitko! a masterpiece.

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  25. thanks a lot, vitko...great album!

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  26. Thank you as always!

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  27. Legendary group. Legendary album. Legendary post! Thank you for all that you do! Djetv

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