steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Various Artists

"Love, Peace, and Poetry: Japanese Psychedelic Music" CD

Q.D.K. Media

Genres: psychedelic rock, acid rock, Japanese psychedelic music

Normal Records
PO Box 150 117
53040 Bonn

Aug 12 - 25 2002

From 1968 to 1972, a large and healthy psychedelic scene existed in Japan, of which few artifacts remain today. Thankfully, the folks at Q.D.K Media took it upon themselves to create this chapter in the acclaimed "Love, Peace, and Poetry" series, dedicated solely to Japanese bands of the psychedelic era. I have no idea where they culled all these recordings from, but you can be assured that they chose them well. While many of these songs have english lyrics, they all have a slight Japanese style to them that's hard to define but definitely there. As we've come to expect Q.D.K., this is a fantastic and well-representative selection from the Japanese scene, and, although this may not appeal to those who dislike psychedelic music, fans of the genre are in for a treat.

Fourteen different bands were enlisted in order to represent the early Japanese psychedelia scene (no, not Acid Mothers Temple, you're off by a couple of decades), and among these are Apryl Fool, The Happenings Four, and Speed Glue, & Shinki. Tracks like Kuni Kawachi & Friends' "Kirikyogen" and Speed, Glue & Shinki's "Run And Hide" are Hendrixian, guitar-heavy tunes, while Apryl Fool's "Tomorrow's Child" and The Mops' "Asamade Matenai" sound more like the eclectic acid rock of The 13th Floor Elevators. Meanwhile, there are more subdued, pop-influenced tracks courtesy of Justin Heathcliff, Beavers, and Jacks, which help to even the compilation out.

While many of the psychedelic compilations out there touch on North American, European, and Australian music, the fourth installment of the LPP collection has successfully covered terrain that even the Pebbles series couldn't take on. Bravo!


Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 58 min 1 sec; 17 tracks; distributed by Forced Exposure; released 2002]