MASAYUKI TAKAYANAGI NEW DIRECTION
Station ‘70: Call In Question / Live Independence (Black Editions)
Eclipse (Black Editions)
Masayuki Takayanagi, who died in 1991 aged 58, was a Japanese guitarist who made a quite extraordinary racket. A jazz musician in essence, although many listeners would likely deem the sort of chaotic freakouts heard on these two reissue packages to be somewhere beyond the form, he was already exhibiting severely leftfield tendencies in the 1950s, before even Ornette Coleman and other American pioneers had coined ‘free jazz’ as a concept. Sonny Sharrock is a sensible point of reference for Takayanaki’s sound, being another rare guitarist in that movement, but this churning freeform head-mash has a spirit all of its own.
Station ‘70: Call In Question / Live Independence combines recordings from two gigs in early 1970, previously released as CDs in the mid-90s, for over two hours of blistering feedback, drumming (from Sabu Toyozumi) on its own planet and tenderer, pastoral excursions thanks to something called the ‘folk pipe’. Eclipse, a 1975 LP initially released in an edition of 100 copies, finds Takayanaki leading a quartet through two side-long tracks of glorious pandemonium that presages later jazz extremists like Borbetomagus and makes you feel like the sky is falling.
words NOEL GARDNER
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