Saturday, January 30, 2010

Electrified Fukuko - Gamble '86

I could easily see this little bon bon fitting at either Big in Japan or Downtown Music, but so far as I am able to tell, no one has posted it. I was unable to find even a scan of the cover, but the above is a detail from it, which gives a pretty good idea. This four song EP released in 1985 finds Ikue Mori just before she began her transformation into the poetess of the drum machine. A trio recording with two other women otherwise unknown to me, Non on bass and vocals and Emiko M. on guitar, with a sound pitched somewhere between Saboten, Fake and Chie Mukai, any of these four songs would have been at home on the Fred Frith produced compilation of Japanese music, Welcome to Dreamland, released the same year. Electrified-Fukuko (Fukuko apparently means belly or something to do with the abdominal cavity), is a bit like a cleaner, more delicate and spacious DNA, three instruments, each inhabiting their own particular space and collectively creating quite a seductive ruckus. Ikue's drumming expands beyond her toms dominated approach to make effective use of cymbals and drum rims, prefiguring the drum machine textures she began to experiment with in Tohban Djan. Golden Gate comes on like LiLiPUT ca. their first album. Fiesta makes effective use of what sounds like a recorder and has something of a Fish & Roses feel about it, while also being the most Japanese sounding. March is notable for Non's Immigrant Song yelp and the bassline of Beast and Blue Moon reminds me of Kira Roessler's work with Mike Watt as Dos. All in all a lost a little gem of the no wave.

01. Golden Gate (2:18)
02. Fiesta (5:47)
03. March (3:05)
04. Beast and Blue Moon (3:02)

Ikue Mori - Drums, Percussion
Non - Bass, Vocals
Emiko M. - Guitar

Thanks to Reck for big help.

Telegraph Records TGEP 030

download | vinyl rip | mp3-320 kbps | 32 MB | Scan |


Anonymous said...

thank you for another ikue mori puzzle - it's interesting to see her move away from the drumming like on dna to her know famous and unique drum machine work.

i really like the "air" in the songs, it's not as tight and full of tension like on dna, the anger seems to made place for playfullness - time goes on, and hateful youth sometimes becomes more relaxed adulthood. but the spirit of early no wave definately shines through! i like all 3 players, the guitar is wonderfully shrieky at times, though not as much as lindsay's. and the singer is out of tune often enough to bump my goose with pleasure...


Anonymous said...

Thanks for this, but what is the Big in Japan blog that you mention? It isn't linked in the Music Blogs section and GoogleBlogSearch isn't finding it for me.

gidouille said...

The biginjapan blog is here:

Anonymous said...

the big in japan blog was the first blog by zipangu, limited to japan-only releases. to post out-of-japan-stuff, zipangu opened a second blog - downtown music (from which a link directs back to the first blog). downtown music isn't limited to the new york downtown scene, but has a big focus on it.