Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Stomu Yamash'ta -  Floating Music  (with Come to the Edge) CD (album) cover

FLOATING MUSIC (WITH COME TO THE EDGE)

Stomu Yamash'ta

Jazz Rock/Fusion


From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

Bookmark and Share
Sean Trane
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Prog Folk
4 stars As I was saying in the Red Buddha review, many of Stomu's better albums are crying out for a Cd release and this is one of them, along with the East Wind album. It's actually difficult to believe the Japanese never did anything regarding one of their most experimental and best-regarded countrymen. Graced with a "prog" artwork, this gatefold album is probably the proggiest of all his albums (and a bloody lengthy one at that both asides clocking over the 25 minutes each), and maybe his jazziest as well. By 73, Stomu had left Paris and the experimental theatre scene and had relocated to London, where he will act as a catalyst are his person and help out a few new musicians get their career started (Pert, Boyle) as well as work with established stars like Winwood, Hopper. The album also bears the name of Floating Music, which might be the Stomu's backing formation's name, but this is unclear to me, the same way East Wind is as well. Anyway, Floating Music will become Yamash'ta's songwriting copyright name.

The 18 minutes Poker Dice is a stunning slow developing splendid electric piano-driven piece that also features a fuzz organ, thousands of percussions, and a groovy groove. Most artistes would've been content filling their album with Poker Dice alone, but Stomu unleashes another 8-mins+ Keep In Lane track, which is closer to straight jazz and free jazz than the usual jazz-rock, that unfortunately fails to match the other track's perfection.

The flipside also has two tracks, but recorded live in London early 72, the first of which is one rare non- Yamash'ta composition, the 13-mins Xingu, future Brand X drummer penning this one. Starts out in free-jazz mode, before settling down to a very calm moment, slowly rebuilding the track through successive addition of instruments. The track reaches two or three climaxes, but thankfully never reaching the chaotic state of the opening minute of this track. The 12-mins One Way starts on a space whispering, where Stomu's vibraphone will take the lead (neither Moerlen, nor Greenslade style) but he will go mad on other percussion instruments as well. A complete freak-out, stunning track, slowly dying on Thompson's flute death throes. Great stuff.

With Edge and Freedom, Stomu reached the progressive apex of his of his career, while his higher profile Go project would get him much more attention from the public. Stomu's album in the vinyl format should still be available on the second-hand market at reasonable price, as they've never been collectibles.

Report this review (#164833)
Posted Monday, March 24, 2008 | Review Permalink
3 stars No doubt, Yamash'ta perfectly befits the stereotype image of a somewhat crazed, avantgarde and totally unpredictable Japanese artist, one that couldn't be accused of consistency.

This was the first of his albums I've heard in the early '70s and back then when every new release in Jazz-Rock was eagerly tracked down and appreciated, it came across as a worthy addition to the genre.

My old tape copies are long gone, leaving me only with fond memories of (some) of his albums. It took me decades to hear Yamash'ta's music again. Well, it appears that things have changed since and the abundance of other artists releasing enormous amounts of material has left this piece sounding rather mediocre in comparison.

Credible effort has s gone into "Floating Music", but in all sincerity, today it appears rather dated, eliciting only limited excitement. Even the presence of my greatly admired percussionist, Morris Pert (RIP) is not enough now to rate this album above "good, but not essential".

Report this review (#869181)
Posted Friday, November 30, 2012 | Review Permalink
Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Stomu Yamash'ta is a Japanese composer and multi-instrumentalist who's specialty is vibes, percussion and keyboards. He moved to France in the early seventies and recorded one album before moving to the UK where he recorded most of his seventies albums. On this particular album we get a couple of future BRAND X members in Morris Pert and Peter Robinson, in fact the only track not composed by Stomu is the song "Xingu" which Pert created. Man I've enjoyed this recording so much, it's a it of a grower but the combination of percussion, vibes and electric piano just hits the spot for me.

"Poker Dice" opens with what sounds like chimes as vibes and experimental sounds help out. This is very laid back to begin with. Then the bass joins in after 2 1/2 minutes as electric piano and vibes help out. Drums follow but it's still laid back until it turns louder before 5 minutes. Nice. A change after 6 1/2 minutes as a new soundscape of bass, electric piano and vibes take over, drums too as it builds. Lots of intricate sounds here. It sounds like the theme for "Mission Impossible" after 12 minutes. A change after 14 minutes as drums, percussion, electric piano and growly sounds lead the way. "Keep In Lane" is different from the rest of the songs as we get these crazy vocal expressions to start before the horns(sax, trumpet & trombone) come in blasting while the drums and vibes support. This is jazzy with plenty of horns and busy drum work. Some dissonant horns too as the bass throbs and the drums pound. Check it out after 4 minutes! Those crazy vocal expressions are back around 8 minutes to the end.

The final two tracks were recorded live at the Queen Elizabeth Hall in London, January 10th 1972. 'Xingu" hits the ground running with random drum patterns and avant horns. Quite experimental until it all stops before a minute and electric piano echoes as percussion and faint sounds help out. The bass before 2 1/2 minutes is impressive then the keys kick in with a full sound before 3 minutes. Drums and percussion dominate 5 minutes in as the electric piano stops for now. The previous soundscape returns after 6 minutes, this is so bright and uplifting. It's just a pleasure the rest of the way especially the distorted keys. Insanity before 12 1/2 minutes to the end. "One Way" is led by flute and relaxed percussion early on then it calms right down around 4 minutes as vibes and percussion lead the way. Check out the bass 6 1/2 minutes in. It's getting intense a minute later with all those percussion sounds. It calms down again and the flute returns around 10 minutes as it stays mellow to the end.

A very solid 4 stars, in fact this was a pleasure.

Report this review (#1578444)
Posted Monday, June 13, 2016 | Review Permalink

STOMU YAMASH'TA Floating Music (with Come to the Edge) ratings only


chronological order | showing rating only

Post a review of STOMU YAMASH'TA Floating Music (with Come to the Edge)


You must be a forum member to post a review, please register here if you are not.

MEMBERS LOGIN ZONE

As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: JazzMusicArchives.com — jazz music reviews and archives | MetalMusicArchives.com — metal music reviews and archives