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HAT AND FIELD

Ain Soph

Jazz Rock/Fusion


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Ain Soph Hat And Field album cover
3.86 | 36 ratings | 7 reviews | 20% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection


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Studio Album, released in 1986

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. The Swan Lake (5:45)
2. Little pieces part 1 (1:34)
3. Suite: Hat and field: (10:02)
a) Triple echo
b) Hat & field
c) Deep feelin'
d) Triple end
e) Spanish channel
4. Mizzle (3:41)
5. Canterbury tale (for Pye Hastings & Richard Sinclair) (2:57)
6. Magic carpet (6:57)
7. Little pieces part 2 (2:31)
8. Pipe dream (7:53)

Total Time: 41:20

Lyrics

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Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Yozox / guitars
- Kikuo Fujikawa / keyboards
- Masahiro Torigaki / bass
- Taiqui Tomiie / drums

Releases information

King Records KICS-2514

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AIN SOPH Hat And Field ratings distribution


3.86
(36 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(20%)
20%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(40%)
40%
Good, but non-essential (31%)
31%
Collectors/fans only (6%)
6%
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)
3%

AIN SOPH Hat And Field reviews


Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Cesar Inca
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars It took 6 years for Ain Soph to finally record this amazing follow-up to their equally amazing debut album. The original lineup 90 (the band was formed in '77) was fully incorporated, since drummer Tomiie and keyboardist Fujikawa rejoined their former fellows (they had left before Ain Soph's debut was recorded). Some of the material already existed during the old days, so basically 'Hat & Field' is like a groups of four musician friends catching up. The title shows one of their major influences, Hatfield and the North: since these guys are really Canterbury freaks, it's no wonder that we can also find the inheritance of other similar acts such as National Health and Gilgamesh, as well as 'Rain Dances'-era Camel. The most explosive moments show the clear influence of Return to Forever and Holdsworth's solo albums. The playing is superb: not only each individual is a top-notch master on their instrument, but also they can interpleay with immaculate fluency through all these complex time signatures and complicated compositions, keeping an aura of delicate sophistication, as if it were actually an easy task to do. The moments in which Yozox and Fujikawa lay their challenging interplays are executed with infinite finesse. As in their previous album, the appearance of some exotic lines reminds the listener of their Japanese essence: their jazzy prog is not a clone, but the result of an inventively idiosyncratic recreation of an established pattern. There is a subtle difference, though: 'Hat & Field' puts a major emphasis on the jazz factor, subduing the symphonic thing for that matter. The beautiful opening track 'Swan Lake' is really captivating: through its tasteful delicateness, it has a subtle energy in it that makes it catchy. 'Hat & Field', the namesake suite, starts the same way, until an explosion of pyrotechnics takes place during its last section: this explosion is effectively continued in the glued following track 'Mizzle'. 'Magic Carpet' and 'Pipe Dream' follow in the same vein as the opening number, while tracks 2, 5 and 7 work as relaxing interludes, which create an introspective, slightly melancholy mood. Lovers of Canterbury and the best 70s jazz-fusion will most likely love this one too, and eventually, discover the particular beauty of Ain Soph's own jazz-prog voice.

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Review by Bj-1
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars After a highly promising and impressive debut, Ain Soph seemed to me like one of the most promising Jazz-Rock bands from Japan in the early 80's. This second offering, however, goes in different directions than before.

While their debut album is a progressive jazz rollercoaster with plenty of technical and compositional competence, "Hat and Field" is calmer, easier to digest and warmer than it's predecessor. It still have the symphonic and canterbury-ish elements from their debut, only that this time they're presented more gently in the songs, and the compositions are far more relaxing and less demanding to listen to. The only problem with this is that the songs seems duller, less interesting and lacks the fire that the band provided for their debut this time. This makes the album a bit uneven, and even boring at times, but it's still enjoyable although not as remarkable as I wanted it to be. It tries hard, but doesn't quite make it, to say it with other words. The songs are melodic but not nearly as thrilling as they could be, but this still is a good album generally, and a good handful of the songs are actually quite good. The musicianship is very good and the production is clear and warm enough to provide all the music nicely througout and adds an extra plus to this (slightly disappointing) album.

This album is a good follow-up to their debut, although quite different. It's a good bet if you are interested in this band, or if you think their debut is a bit too much. If you like jazzy, melodic and solid prog then give this one a try. If you already are in love with their debut, you might get a bit disappointed (as I did) but it still deserves 3.5/5.

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Review by crimson87
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars Love at first Feel

This is one of those opportunities when an album clicks on you just by hearing the first note on it.If you are a fan of jazz fusion and the late Canterbury Scene , then this is the real deal for you.Ain Soph are a japanese cult band that did not release many albums , however the few they released were absolutely stunning.If I were to find a way to describe the album sound it may be usefuf to say that this is a mixture between The Rotter's Club and National Health debut album.

Yet , this description falls short.The music is crafted with so much precission that it's possible for you to feel overwhelmed by this fact.However guitarist Yozox plays some of the most emotional notes ever played on a six string , and when I say emotional I mean: David Gilmour , Steve Rothery or the Derek and the Dominos Clapton phase.Just hear to the opening track The swan lake and you will understand what I say.

Yozox ain't the only virtuoso on the list , Bassist Nasashiro Tokigaki and drummer Taiqui manage to deliver a fine performance on the record , mainly on the 10 minute title track and the colsing track Pipe Dream

I am not giving this hidden gem the same rating as Brain Salad Surgery for no reason , this may be one of my best adquisiitions in my neverending musical journey.Having heard this group , I started to get albums by japanese artists like Kenso , Kazumi Watanabe , Gerard and Hiromi but I am searchng for more! It's just that japanese mucisians seem to have something with jazz , the way they interpret it leaves me in awe.

A very reccommended album if you are a jazz fusion fan like me.

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Review by apps79
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Neo Prog Team
3 stars Shortly after the release of the masterful ''A story of mysterious forest'' Masey Hattori left Ain Soph, he went to form his own Fusion-oriented band 99.99.That resulted the pause of activities by the band, around 1983 a new keyboardist was brought on board, but the new formation did not work out.After releasing a solo cassette in 1983, Yozox Yamamoto reformed Ain Soph due to the unexpected comeback of Kikuo Fujikawa.With Masahiro Torigaki on bass and Bellaphon's Taiqui Tomiie on drums the band would record its second disc ''Hat and field'' in 1986, released on Nexus.

The title of the album says it all.The much more Classical-influenced Masey Hattori was out and Fujikama's jazzy-spiced playing was thrown in Ain Soph's style, thus the new album was heavily resembling to the pre-Ain Soph years of Tenchi Sozo.With such a name it's rather useless to talk about the band's sound at this point.It was recalling the monster Canterbury Fusion works of the 70's and HATFIELD AND THE NORTH, CARAVAN, NATIONAL HEALTH and even FOCUS are just a few names, the sound of which Ain Soph tried to plagiarize in ''Hat and Field''.So most of this effort passes through ethereal electric piano and synth workouts, CAMEL-like emotional and jazzy-flavored solos and melodies (remember, Tomiie came from BELLAPHON, which were a highly CAMEL-influenced combo) and generally ''Hat and field'' tries to deliver an airy, less technical and more melodious approach on Progressive/Jazz Rock with accesible tunes on an all instrumental offering.Being Japanese, which means musicians with an impressive technical level, Ain Soph couldn't leave their virtuosic skills aside, so a couple of pieces feature some fiery interplays on keyboards and guitars, sitting comfortably next to the calm solos and atmospheric keyboards.Moreover, despite being a really down-to- earth album, ''Hat and field'' contains a huge number of emphatic breaks and rhythm changes, somewhat unfairly treated by the band itself due to some flat keyboard lines, but the result is always tasteful and interesting.

The revival of the Canterbury scene into the 80's.Melodic British-styled Fusion, nothing to do actually with the more symphonic sound of ''A story of mysterious forest'', this sits somewhere between Camel and Hatfield and The North.Warmly recommended for its honest approach on progressive instrumentals and delicate interplays.

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Latest members reviews

4 stars It seems with the band's debut, they made an attempt to showcase their musical ability while giving less effort to their songwriting whereas, in this album, it seems as though the band does a flip over and makes an attempt to craft beautiful and interesting songs that may not show off how talented t ... (read more)

Report this review (#1172714) | Posted by MJAben | Thursday, May 08, 2014 | Review Permanlink

4 stars The Swan Lake 5:46. Very catchy start of an album, soft key to a strong guitar with a tune you can follow, pretty slick, bass flying some notes of it's own. Keys following then completely take over with bass up and down back to full guitar excellent keys above. Tempo and style to pure elec gui ... (read more)

Report this review (#352092) | Posted by Steven Brodziak | Tuesday, December 14, 2010 | Review Permanlink

3 stars Released 6 years after Ain Soph's 1980 debut "A Story of Mysterious Forest", which had little to offer besides outstanding technical performance, "Hat and Field" was definitely a step in the right direction, with the instrumental band focused on creating effective, memorable composi ... (read more)

Report this review (#61497) | Posted by Pafnutij | Saturday, December 24, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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