When boundary-crossing Japanese marginal
music hit the creakingly stiff western music scene a decade or
so ago, Ruins (from Koenji, Tokyo) were one of the most notable
acts on this new front. Unfortunately, though still innovative
and inspired, the duo have too often been overshadowed by more
"fashionable" artists like Boredoms or Fushitsusha.
Just listen to Ruins latest album Pallaschtom and
youll find that the abundance of ideas in their music still
causes shortness of breath in those with poorer health and a feeling
of inadequateness in fitter indviduals, too.
Those not familiar with the group should
keep a few things in mind: listening to Ruins requires an open
mind, good nerves and keeping all the senses alert at all times.
A sense of humour wouldnt do any harm, either. Ruins embody
the blessed union of technical skill and pure musical recklessness
- no, sorry, MADNESS. Some traits in their music point to the
darker names of European progressive rock like Univers Zero and
Magma, but their gushing energy and compactness are pure 80's
American hardcore punk. The telepathically seamless storm of notes
that emanates from Ruins consists of spaghetti-like basslines,
tempo changes stuck on permanent sustained fire, endlessly syncopated
fierce rhythms and charmingly twisted vocal artistry.
Ruins are currently formed of drummer/vocalist
Tatsuya Yoshida, an original member of the group, and bassist/
vocalist Hisashi Sasaki who joined a couple of albums ago. The
Ruins discography consists of about twenty albums, some of which
are co-productions with for example Derek Bailey, Omoide Hatoba
and Ron Anderson. Yoshida has a number of side projects too, like
Koenjihyakkei, Korekyojin, Musica Transonic and Mainliner - familiar
names to all Japanophiles.
excellent live album Refusal Fossil suggests, we can expect
a maximum dose of uninhibited musical revelry that will activate
brain cells and - no doubt about it - the more supple members
of the audience to move their bodies, too. JMT
Saturday 10.11.2001 - Gloria
21:00-3:00 - Avanto-Club: Ruins