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OOIOO

RIO/Avant-Prog • Japan


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OOIOO biography
OOIOO (pronounced oh-oh-eye-oh-oh) are an all-female Japanese group, that were formed in 1996, by Yoshimi P-We (Yoshimi Yakota), as a ficticious band for a photo shoot for Switch magazine (in Japan). However, they quickly garnered a following and in 1997 they opened for Sonic Youth.

Yoshimi P-We, founder, multi-instrumentalist and vocalist of the band, started off her career in UFO Or Die in 1986, with eYe. Yoshimi and eYe then formed Boredoms, an experimental noise band in the same year; they released their debut album in 1988. Yoshimi is still an official member of Boredoms as a drummer and percussionist.

Yoshimi in OOIOO, vacates the drumstool in favour of guitar and vocals (and various other instruments) and designs all the artwork for the album sleeves and booklets as well as being the producer on TAIGA. In 2002 she was a guest on The Flaming Lips album "Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots" which she was also name-checked on and this launched her to the rest of the world.

OOIOO released their debut album "Eight" (also known as OOIOO) in 1998. The material on this debut album was much closer to that of Boredoms, but things would change with later releases. The album features guests eYe (on electronics), Julie Cafritz (Free Kitten) and Keigo Oyamada (Cornelius). This album was eventually released in the US by Kill Rock Stars.

Their next release, in 2000 was "Gold and Green" and this album featured guest musicians, such as Sean Lennon, Yuka Honda (Cibbo Matto), Atari (Boredoms) and Seiichi Yamamoto (Boredoms & Omoide Hatoba). This album mixes Krautrock and free jazz, with ethnic sounds, as well as the quirkyness of Japanese music and culture. The other members of the band at this time were Kayan (guitar) (who replaced Kyoto), Yoshida Atuhisa (bass) and Yoshico (drums). This album was finally released to the US market in 2005, including Yoshimi's artwork.

In 2001 the girls released "Feather Float" which was again an eclectic mix of music and styles, but this time much more avant-garde, heavier and noisy, yet still typically OOIOO. Maki was the new bass player on this album.

2004 was to bring the jazz-tinged, lighter feel of "Kila Kila Kila" to the world. A new bass player AyA features on this album, as well as Yuka Yoshimura on drums. Hatano Atuko guests on 'cello.

Their most recent release is the 2006 album "TAIGA" which translates to "Big River" in Japanese and "Forest" in Russian. This album is again...
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Feather FloatFeather Float
Birdman 2001
Audio CD$16.32
$9.70 (used)
Gold & GreenGold & Green
Thrill Jockey 2005
Audio CD$7.99
$6.96 (used)
Best of OoiooBest of Ooioo
Import
Imports 2004
Audio CD$44.31
$14.27 (used)
GamelGamel
Thrill Jockey 2014
Audio CD$8.87
$5.99 (used)
TaigaTaiga
Thrill Jockey 2006
Audio CD$8.53
$0.01 (used)
Kila Kila KilaKila Kila Kila
Thrill Jockey 2004
Audio CD$10.93
$0.01 (used)
Armonico HewaArmonico Hewa
Thrill Jockey 2009
Audio CD$10.43
$9.41 (used)
OoiooOoioo
Kill Rock Stars 1998
Audio CD$69.95
$2.42 (used)
Eye RemixEye Remix
EP
Thrill Jockey 2007
Audio CD$1.87
$0.99 (used)
OO8OOOO8OO
UNIVERSAL MUSIC JAPAN
Audio CD$46.59
$11.68 (used)
Right Now on Ebay (logo)
Ooioo - Taiga [CD New] USD $16.31 Buy It Now 1 day
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OOIOO-EYE REMIX (EP) CD NEW USD $8.85 Buy It Now 2 days
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OOIOO-GOLD & GREEN CD NEW USD $16.54 Buy It Now 4 days
OOIOO-KILA KILA KILA CD NEW USD $16.54 Buy It Now 4 days
OOIOO-oo8oo White Vinyl LP Gatefold Kill Rock Stars Boredoms Yoshimi USD $20.00 [0 bids]
6 days
Ooioo - Gold & Green [CD New] USD $16.33 Buy It Now 7 days
Eye Remix - Ooioo (CD Used Very Good) USD $5.73 Buy It Now 8 days
OOIOO - Gamel - CD USD $16.93 Buy It Now 8 days
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OOIOO ??8? LP 1997 TIME BOMB Boredoms Yoshimi Ufo Or Die Pink Wax RARE OOP USD $29.99 Buy It Now 10 days
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OOIOO-TAIGA CD NEW USD $16.54 Buy It Now 15 days
OOIOO - Armonico Hewa (2009) JAPAN Mini LP CD NEW Boredoms USD $12.99 Buy It Now 15 days
OOIOO - Gamel - Vinyl (gatefold 2xLP) USD $25.71 Buy It Now 15 days
Kila Kila Kila by OOIOO (CD, Mar-2004, Thrill Jockey) USD $15.03 Buy It Now 17 days
Eye Remix EP [EP] by OOIOO (CD, Sep-2007, Thrill Jockey) USD $7.99 Buy It Now 17 days
Ooioo-Armonico Hewa CD NEW USD $17.30 Buy It Now 19 days
Eye Remix Ep Ooioo Audio CD USD $12.97 Buy It Now 19 days
RARE ADVANCE U.S. PROMO Boredoms CD Super Roots 9 EYE OOIOO Thrill Jockey 2008 USD $7.00 Buy It Now 19 days
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OOIOO - Feather Float CD JAPAN PSCR-5739 OBI 1999 USD $39.63 Buy It Now 22 days
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OOIOO - TAIGA CD NEW+ USD $21.37 Buy It Now 25 days
Armonico Hewa - Ooioo (CD Used Very Good) USD $14.16 Buy It Now 25 days
Armonico Hewa by OOIOO (CD, Sep-2009, Thrill Jockey) USD $20.23 Buy It Now 25 days
OOIOO - KILA KILA KILA CD NEW+ USD $21.37 Buy It Now 25 days
Taiga - Ooioo (CD Used Very Good) USD $13.36 Buy It Now 26 days
Taiga by OOIOO (CD, Sep-2006, Thrill Jockey) USD $19.02 Buy It Now 26 days
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OOIOO/S.T. LP 1997 JAPAN SEALED!!! BOREDOMES YOSHIMI USD $35.99 Buy It Now 28 days
BOREDOMS ?Super 77 / Super Sky 12inch 1998 OOIOO Hanatarash Limited Edition OOP USD $21.99 Buy It Now 28 days
Ooioo - Gamel [CD New] USD $18.66 Buy It Now 29 days
Gamel [Slipcase] * by OOIOO (CD, Jun-2014, Thrill Jockey) USD $13.59 Buy It Now 29 days
Armonico Hewa by OOIOO (CD, Sep-2009, Thrill Jockey) USD $11.99 Buy It Now 29 days
Kila Kila Kila by OOIOO (CD, Mar-2004, Thrill Jockey) USD $9.99 Buy It Now 29 days
Taiga by OOIOO (CD, Sep-2006, Thrill Jockey) USD $11.99 Buy It Now 29 days

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OOIOO discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

OOIOO top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

2.09 | 5 ratings
Eight/OOIOO
1997
4.00 | 15 ratings
Feather Float
1999
3.99 | 10 ratings
Gold and Green
2000
0.00 | 0 ratings
Shockcity Shockers Vol. 2 - OOIOO Remix
2001
3.00 | 6 ratings
Kila Kila Kila
2003
4.61 | 36 ratings
Taiga
2006
3.15 | 7 ratings
Armonico Hewa
2009
5.00 | 1 ratings
Gamel
2014

OOIOO Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

OOIOO Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

OOIOO Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

0.00 | 0 ratings
Cococoooioo
2004

OOIOO Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

OOIOO Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Taiga by OOIOO album cover Studio Album, 2006
4.61 | 36 ratings

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Taiga
OOIOO RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

5 stars This is one of the most entertaining slices of Avant music that I've ever had the pleasure of consuming. Yoshimi P-We is the driving force behind this all female band from Japan, creating all the lyrics and music. She also helped form the experimental band THE BOREDOMS which I've had a lot of trouble enjoying so imagine my surprise at how much I enjoy this album. Yoshimi is a multi-instrumentalist playing guitar here and other instruments along with being the lead vocalist. With THE BOREDOMS she's the drummer by the way. I don't think I've spun this even once without laughing at some point at the brilliance I was hearing. This is so catchy yet experimental as they tow that line in between some how. There are three guests all adding some sort of percussion sounds, and calling this tribal music isn't too far off the mark, as this is all about the many beats and the crazy but oh so good vocals.

"UMA" opens with tribal-like drumming as the vocals join in along with backing vocals. So catchy! Bongos, whistles, synths and more help out. Insanity is the word and my head is spinning. Check out the vocals just before 2 1/2 minutes as she goes a notch higher than I think is humanly possible. Too much! Strange sounds a minute later when the vocals stop. "KMS" starts off fairly normal with outbursts of sound that come and go. Bongos join in and then we get a calm before 2 1/2 minutes with deep sounds. The drums kick in briefly followed by guitar as the deep sounds continue. Sounds like trumpet and guitar as these strange vocal melodies arrive after 4 1/2 minutes. Spoken words after 6 minutes along with some great sounding percussion work. Some inventive guitar here as well. The tempo picks up after 8 minutes.

"UJA" has lots of percussion and beats including vibes? Some weird vocal melodies come and go. A rhythm after a minute joins in. So much going on. Avant vocals start to come and go then the vocal melodies are staggered before 3 minutes. Cool sound. A change after 4 minutes as it picks up with drums, guitar and vocals standing out. Crazy stuff. It then settles right down 6 1/2 minutes in with vocal melodies, electronics and more. "GRS" has a drum intro as the organ pulsates. Vocal melodies join in before a minute. Sounds like vibes again. This is experimental and the least enjoyable one of the bunch for me. "ATS" starts out with percussion and vocal harmonies along with electronics. Those vibe-like sounds join in before 2 minutes. Some yells come and go as the percussion and electronics continue while the harmonies and vibes have stopped. Such an interesting track. It kicks into a full sound after 5 minutes. So good!

"SAI" is the 15 minute tour de force. It sounds like keys and electronics to begin with as this deep fuzzed out sound joins in briefly. Drums and distorted guitar follow. Desperate sounding vocals before 2 minutes along with backing vocals. Catchy stuff but experimental too. A calm 5 1/2 minutes in as we get percussion and more. Is that guitar making that noise? Some demented vocal expressions 7 minutes in and check it out after 9 minutes. Amazing! Devilish vocals a minute later. A great sound before 13 minutes as well. What a song! "UMO" like the opening track is around 3 1/2 minutes of tribal-like drumming, multi-vocals and it's uptempo and crazy with so much going on. Love this stuff. "IOA" is different with this Island-like sound that is lighter and pleasant but the vocals are anything but that. A catchy beat after 2 minutes and the vocals will come and go. Guitar joins in and synths as well.

I gotta give this 5 stars. To me this is very unique in the Avant and Experimental genres. I can't even imagine the time and innovation that went into making this recording.

 Taiga by OOIOO album cover Studio Album, 2006
4.61 | 36 ratings

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Taiga
OOIOO RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by marcobrusa

5 stars So original. So vibrant. If you have the time and place to listen to this album with your eyes closed do it. It was very rewarding for me at least. Always my priorities when i hear new music are originality (or "surprise effect"), variety and feelings (not any in particular, just strong, authentic and overall positive feelings that music provokes me). This album has those 3 items; it is very original on every level, abstract but somehow human, it is varied despite the abstract feel present in all songs, and provokes very weird feelings. I mean this in a positive way, because a weird song can be positive as much as a sad song can make me happy so that's why i listen to it. Do you understand? Another diamond from Japan. Last comment: the percussion is superb.
 Feather Float by OOIOO album cover Studio Album, 1999
4.00 | 15 ratings

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Feather Float
OOIOO RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE Team

4 stars Yoshimi P-We is one of the crazy geniuses who defy all expectations, break every rule and gleefully revel in the contempt it causes. I have just learned that her solo all-female band OOIOO isn't just a random uttering of vowels to annoy the speaker but in fact is a 5-bit code representing giving someone the middle finger. Clever, yes. Just like the music she and her all girl posse conjure up on their second release FEATHER FLOAT, which i like to call "The Pretty Birdie Album" because of its spectacular and dynamic artwork (done by Yoshimi) which takes the bold bright colors of every young girl's Barbie's Dreamhouse and My Pretty Pony fantasies and turns them into a psychedelic and cloud chasing mind expansion. After being blown away by their outstanding album "Taiga" as well as by her work with the Boredoms, i was eager to explore her eclectic and experimental works further and this was the next album that found its way onto my player.

It isn't sufficient to call the works of Yoshimi experimental, trippy, wild and weird because as with the earliest of Boredoms releases, this is beyond weird. It exists in its own musical world. There are really no rules to follow and the only thing that really keeps this from falling into pure chaos is the desire to keep an organic and rhythmic march through the album's run. The result of this highly experimental music is that it is both very approachable and truly unprecedented simultaneously. This is one of those albums i decided to comment a bit track by track because it's the only true way to convey what's going on. Far from a comprehensive description, it suffices to add that Yoshimi alone plays guitar, djembe, bongos, synths, keyboards, jew harp, talking drum and contribute all lead vocals as well as DJ scratches and other bizarre noises. The other girls include Maki on bass and handclaps, Yoshiko on drums and handclaps and Kyoko on guitar, handclaps and vocals. The GoGos or the Bangles this ain't. This is an amazingly talented bunch of women who display a wonderfully addicting feminine take on experimental rock. This album didn't grab me immediately like "Taiga" but it has sunk in and although not as perfect as that album it is a beautifully surreal sonic experience nonetheless.

1...The least interesting tracks are the first two. The album starts off with the overly repetitive "Be Sure To Loop" with a recurring groove in 4/4 timing that lasts 7:45. Way too long and kept me from enjoying this album at first. Nothing really interesting happens and hints at a total turkey of an album. This track should have been dropped IMHO.

2..."Oizumo" is a cover of a Kiyoshi Izumi song and although it is better than the opener it still is a rather monotonous space dance with a hippity hoppity bounce and straight forward 4/4 timing. Groovy for a dance party but not exactly interesting beyond. It does introduce elements of spacey synths and vocal chants. Should have been at the end or left out IMHO.

3..."Ina 咲くの唄" Now we get to the good stuff. Now we get a traditional Japanese koto riff only on the guitar. We also get some interesting vocal harmonies between the girls and the percussion becomes more complex with crazy time sigs. Still very catchy and groovy with the bass keeping all very accessible but the complexities are a welcome touch.

4..."Ina" morphs into "Ah Yeah!" with a steady groove and frenetic tribal drumming with high-energy declarative shouted vocals. Most lyrics are either nonsensical or Japanese. The song ends with a clever take on the C&C Music Factory's "Everybody Dance Now" with Yoshimi shouting "Everybody Trance Now."

5..."Switch On" is a short frenetic drum jam for a minute before vocals appear and we get a minute of "oh, oh, oh's" with trippy psych guitar freakouts

6..."Jackson's Club Sunspot" has a funk groove with trippy echo effects and choppy time sigs

7..."Asozan" Trippy single sliding guitar which finally adds housebeat drums and vocals

8..."Baby Bamboo From Nose" Starts out with DJ record scratching and then adds frenetic choral type chanting by two girls in unison with a ping pong ball dropping as percussion. After a while we get a groovy bass, full percussion and guitars

9..."1000 Frogs And 3 Sun In A House" Middle Eastern musically inspired with strings and percussion and wordless vocals. Ends in crazy psych guitar lead eventually accompanied by full drums and briefly morphs into a different song. Sounds like something the Secret Chiefs 3 would come up with

10..."Ring Ring Lee" Guitar riff and syncopated percussion. Vocals in English and perhaps a koto? or some other traditional Japanese instrument.

11...Simply a hidden track of weird noise to end a strange album

 Taiga by OOIOO album cover Studio Album, 2006
4.61 | 36 ratings

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Taiga
OOIOO RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE Team

5 stars Starting out like caffeinated cheerleaders with a tribal drum circle it's obvious from the getgo that the all-female ensemble of OOIOO is a unique musical force and has peaked my full attention throughout the entirety of the album. Although labelled as experimental and to be fair, it is that, this isn't the kind of experimental music that leaves you wondering what drugs they were ingesting to come up with ideas that exist in their own universe. Not at all. This is highly accessible while simultaneously taking you on a sonic sidetrip that I for one have not had the pleasure of travelling before hearing this.

This album has eight tracks that are all only three letters long. It has many different musical elements but it's not hard to strip away the veneer to see what's lurking beneath the surface. These girls have truly mastered a complete fusion of noise rock with tribal drumming with a kind of traditional Japanese like guitar riffing surrounded by electronic effects. The vocals always make me think of Japan as there is a very traditional feel to it as well as experimental. This isn't avant-garde to the point where it seems like it was composed on other worlds.

There is a sensual female aggressiveness to the whole thing. Kinda like the Go-Gos joined Melt Banana and invited a tribal drumming circle to jam. Every song is different and the album flows to the end without a shred of boredom, well except for Yoshimi P-We who is also in The Boredoms. She alone contributes the guitar, vocals, djembe, bongo, synthesizer, piano, Jew's harp and talking drum.

This music is unique, intense and amazingly diverse. If you want a new musical trip that really falls outside the boundaries of any musical genres that doesn't leave you scratching your head in dismay because it is absolutely so outside of your musical reality then this is will surely grab your attention and sustain it throughout multiple listens as it has with me. Accessible and avant-garde. Bold and beautiful. Cute, cuddly and crazy. 4.5 rounded up

 Kila Kila Kila by OOIOO album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.00 | 6 ratings

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Kila Kila Kila
OOIOO RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Prog Sothoth
Collaborator Prog Metal Team

3 stars OOIOO are really hitting some experimental territory here, not that they were ever commercial, but with Kila Kila Kila they added enough free jazzy elements and noodlings to the point where these pieces start to lose structure and focus. Still, there's entertaining moments to be found, with some of them being incandescent.

As much as the chimes & bells tune "Ene Soda" is kinda pretty, it's not until almost a few minutes into the third track, "Shizuku Ring Neng", that things start to cook. Drummer Yuko Yoshimura really makes the difference here, connecting all the dots under her groove and providing the needed energy to keep the machine working. Yoshimi, meanwhile is coming up with all kinds of melodies and noises with various instruments while singing with a style that ranges from 'cute' to just plain 'weird'. I dig the "wona" chants going on in that tune; they induce that warm & fuzzy effect on me.

"On Mani" is another cool track, which brandishes string instruments and trumpets to carry the melodies over the funky rhythms. Aya has certainly gotten pretty good at her bass playing by this time, since when she joined she really didn't know how to play it. Then there's the epic "Aster", which would be my other favorite track just after "Shizuku Ring Neng", that starts slow and atmospheric, then swells into the wacky 'jazz over a tight beat' vibe the band seemed to be reaching for with this particular album. Other tracks don't hold my interest too well. "Northern Light" is saved by Yuko's stellar jazz drumming keeping things afloat, making her the most notable member concerning this release. She's awesome. The last track features some nice piano moments, but man does that tune takes its time to eventually go nowhere in particular.

This isn't an average affair. It's got great moments, and moments far from great, so an unsteady ride it is. And it's daring, adventurous and sometimes even fun, which certainly helps regarding its replay value. It takes a while to get there though, so patience is required.

 Gold and Green by OOIOO album cover Studio Album, 2000
3.99 | 10 ratings

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Gold and Green
OOIOO RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Guldbamsen
Special Collaborator Retired Admin

4 stars The new and improved Jane Fonda workout (complete with mescaline and psychedelic punk)

When I think about all girl bands I tend to veer into the vicinity of Spice Girls, Destiny's Child, The Supremes, Martha & The Vandellas and those awful Pussycat Dolls.... Until I crossed paths with PA some 6 years ago, I'd never in a million years imagine finding an act like OOIOO with 4 girls strutting their stuff in the more playful and obscure pathways of the avantguarde rock n roll quarters.

WTF?!?!?!! Was my first reaction, when I heard OOIOO. Like a cold sucker punch to the stomach, I'd have to man up to the fact that all my preconceived notions concerning women and music - make that women and experimental music - were basically faulty at heart. Here was a group of women who actually played progressive rock with the force and attitude of a screaming punk creature from the British gutter ca 1977.

I took a chance with this thing after attending a Flaming Lips gig in Denmark's most famous amusement park, Tivoli. I learned that Yoshimi Battles The Pink Robots wasn't just a flash way of incorporating Japanese zing into an album title, but actually the name of one of the guests featured on it. 'Great Scott!' I thought to myself, when I then found out about her being in an experimental rock group from Japan with all girls, subsequently ordering their debut the day after with a massive hang over and weird memories of Teletubbies accompanying the entire FL gig dancing joyfully on each side of the stage...

Originally known for playing drums in Boredoms, Yoshimi P-We founded this group sometime around 1997, before opening up for Sonic Youth later in the year. She's played the occasional trumpet toot as well, but somewhere along the line - she switched to the guitar and just about any other instrument you can think of. On this baby she terrorises everything from synths, various flutes, djembe, piano, drums and santoor to a freakin triangle. Joined by fellow kamikaze pilots Kayano(guitar, vocals), Maki(bass) and Yoshico(drums, maracas) Yoshimi seems to have created a modern parallel to the rumbling wild and playful lands of Krautrock.........well at least with Gold & Green that is. There's a primal surge of energy running through the heart of this thing, and simply name-dropping acts like Faust, CAN and LA Düsseldorf feels oddly out of place - even if you hear all those acts emanating through in different layers of the music.

Always managing to stick its sweaty face into the mix, we find tribal percussion, Indian rhythms, hypnotising drones of electronic fluttering bits - THE BEAT ladies and gents! - all of which interweave in extraordinary ways throughout the course of this album. These rhythmic acrobatics are to me the very key to the music. Not only used for traditional purposes, they tend to morph and zoom out of their shells and take on melodic forms. At the same time you'll find the flutes, synths and whatever else being played by Yoshimi mimicking the playful feel coming outta those rhythms - making for a totally unique sound.

With a little bit of J-Pop sensibilities, post punk, RIO, sensuous female gibberish vocals and Indian flair thrown in for good measure, Green & Gold moves away from the prevailing fad with most modern psych rock revivalists, where long and loose jams somehow manage to find their way onto tape. All of this album feels knitted together in a highly precise manner. Nothing is left for chance -not even the tumultuous parts. It's like looking at those breathtaking silk prints from Japan. Pinkish apple blossoms on a background of orange sun and withered trees. There's a similar search for perfection here, even if it takes the music to far away cultures.

Did I forget to mention that Sean Lennon makes a chorus cameo with some vocals? Or that I lost 5 kilos last summer just by dancing to this baby? I probably forgot about the Spice Girls too right?........ No? Well all I can say is that if you're a big fan of the Spice Girls, you're most likely going to love this played at the wrong speed in a dream inside somebody else's dream house. 4.5 stars.

 Gold and Green by OOIOO album cover Studio Album, 2000
3.99 | 10 ratings

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Gold and Green
OOIOO RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Prog Sothoth
Collaborator Prog Metal Team

5 stars It took something like this to get me out of the doldrums and get back into the swing of listening and writing about music I dig. I've been playing this thing like crazy and it just gets better every time I throw it on. It's playful, mischievous and wild...kind of like that cute but crazy girl that wriggles her way into some slacker dude's mopey life to add spark in so many indie flicks and Korean comedies. And what a band name; I'll be honest in that I'm not too familiar with The Boredoms (in which Yoshimi is their drummer), and that the reason I got into this group in the first place was in fact their funky looking band name. Whatever works I guess, because this album will not be leaving any of my top lists anytime soon.

Avant prog isn't the easiest prog-pill to swallow, but once it's down the hatch the benefits will be felt. Gold And Green mesmerizes by swirling together serene sonic vistas with tribal drumming complementing a playful paganistic wink while sometimes soaring into frantic krautrock psychedelic madness. And some of this stuff grooves like one mean mutha! Damn I need a new pair of shades.

"Moss Trumpeter" sets the mood with its peaceful yet majestic trumpet melody punctuated by some heavy rhythmic percussion, catchy enough to entice yet different enough to wonder what the hell the next tune is going to sound like. I love nutty playful albums like this. The album's heart and soul reveals itself with three mini epics in a row, "Grow Sound Tree", "Mountain Book" and "I'm A Song". "Grow Sound Tree" starts off by a woodwind based loop, although played in organic and wistful fashion. Then the drums kick in. Yoshico is some kind of monster behind the kit, punching out these kickin' beats I get so immersed in that I don't even realize how bizarre and absurd this would sound to some random chump passing by. "Mountain Book" opens as this open air pastoral soundscape overlain with a real sweet vocal melody that repeats itself throughout as the music builds in crescendo to dizzying heights with some insane drumwork. "I'm A Song" has this funky vibe that comes across like a krautrock take on Japanese pop while evolving through occasional tempo changes. You can hear the band having a blast playing this utterly fun yet progressive number.

That ain't all she wrote though; this whole album is essential to my ears these days, although a tune like "Fossil" took a bit of getting used to with its odd chants that eventually won me over after a few plays of the entire album. "Ki No Rukujou Ressha" is flat-out greatness, an instant winner with a driving rhythm, great bass and guitar playing and an energetic playful atmosphere. "Emeraldragonfly" boasts some memorable vocals and one stellar change of pace boosted by strong instrumental skills. These gals can PLAY.

And there's "Idbi". Where would my life be without this song? I don't want to know. It's like a little kitten, puppy and bunny morphed into one cute but weirdly enigmatic critter. It's fun to whistle along with too.

OOIOO has a few other strong efforts out there, with Taiga being in particular noteworthy, but Gold And Green is my jam, and what a glow-in-the-dark wild gold and green colored jam it is!

 Gold and Green by OOIOO album cover Studio Album, 2000
3.99 | 10 ratings

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Gold and Green
OOIOO RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Sinusoid
Prog Reviewer

4 stars OOIOO is not the band one thinks of when the term ''prog'' comes to mind. Their use of repetitive jamming and post-rock guitar sounds might not what the classic progster would wish to come to terms with. But while I feel OOIOO takes their artistic vision seriously, their music is pure fun, plain and simple. It's so organic and free without worrying about falling into someone's good list of what is music that it passes off as Yoshimi and co. having fun with what music can be.

It can be difficult separating the wheat from the chaff in terms of quality tracks because of the very experimental nature of the songs. I personally would not continue listening after ''Idbi'', although ''Emeraldragonfly'' sounds like a garage version of ''De Futura'' (Magma) with an interesting fiddling at the end. The two tracks under one minute are good for interludes, but nothing great and vocally scratchy.

OOIOO has a method for a few songs here like ''Fossil'' and ''Mountain Book''; set up the song softly, slowly get into the groove, jam on it for a bit, get progressively louder and faster, and hit paydirt at the end. ''Fossil'' is especially on point with this as it entices the listener as the song builds on itself in just four minutes. Others like the flute-laden ''Grow Sound Tree'' and the J-pop like ''I'm a Song'' start off powerfully only to get too caught up in experimentative structures and lose steam, especially the latter.

With maestro Yoshimi P-We's stature as a percussionist, several of the tracks (notably ''Moss Trumpeter'', its reprise ''Return to NOW'', the seventh track) are heavy on percussion instruments. The percussion is typically restricted to drumkit like stuff; the lack of variety is a bit lame, especially when you know they dabble with electronic stuff and tribal percussions on TAIGA. Oddly, one of the better tracks is the second one; it's little more than floating keyboards (or clarinets, can't tell), yet so poignant and moving.

With prog rock being one of the more serious genres of music, GOLD AND GREEN is one of those albums like those from classic Gong, the Mothers of Invention and Samla Mammas Manna that is musically worthy yet so much fun to listen to with the music being not that serious. If you can take a few experimental jams and intruding percussion lines, this album is pure joy.

 Taiga by OOIOO album cover Studio Album, 2006
4.61 | 36 ratings

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Taiga
OOIOO RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by Sinusoid
Prog Reviewer

5 stars Music like you've never experienced before.

OOIOO is a very low-key band that hasn't garnered much attention except possibly to fans of the Japanese noise-rock group Boredoms. TAIGA is one of the project's more recent efforts and my first try with the group, bypassing any earlier works and the Boredoms projects.

It suffices to say that my impression of this effort is this; it blew me away. I didn't think this was possible in music.

The overall musical palette is very diverse, very eclectic and very abstract in terms of genres that influenced TAIGA. One could call it world music without question. I would describe the music as organic, embryonic, ethereal and strange, and even though I say this too often, you really have to hear the album in order to get my drift.

The leadoff ''UMA'' and the show-stopper ''UMO'' are essentially the same track under different musical textures. ''UMA'' has this pressure chamber, electronic type of sound featuring machine drumming (not drum machines, sorry if I scared you) and mechanical guitars. ''UMA'' could count as an industrial-electronic piece. ''UMO'' is another animal; this has a tribal, almost wildlife sound to it. You'll here flutes, big, booming (what sound like) buffalo-skin drums, whistles and allsorts. The main appeals for ''UMO'' are its pace and its gradual build to an effective climax.

I say that ''UMO'' and ''UMA'' are the same because the same chant is used for both pieces. I find this to be astounding because you rarely hear of a band rewriting their own tune and using it in under a completely different genre and still being effective. ''UMO'' in particular is one of the pieces that floored me the first time I listened to it and the backup singers are spot on.

''KMS'' changes the musical landscape after the vaccuuming opener, preferring a laidback, almost Krautrock approach. ''KMS'' centres around the guitar webbings that give the tune its Krautrock kudos, but we have tribal drumming in the accompaniment. Believe it or not, this is the weakest overall track.

''UJA'' gets better with its hypnotic, tribal, mechanical and demented opening line that has that embryonic development you can detect just by listening. Even stranger still, Yoshimi's vocals sound akin to that of a Japanese pop sensation coming off of a sugar rush. The song gets really demented when all we're left with are the girls freakishly chanting, and then the song goes techno as if we've just landed on a dancy pop album. This kind of genre play is something only a few bands can pull off successfully, and I feel that OOIOO is one of those bands.

''GRS'' might constitute as filler for most, but I think the soundscape here is enjoyable. I mentally picture a New England rocky shoreline with waves crashing against it and sirens are beckoning beyond the horizons. By the way, there appear to be accordion sounds here that give the piece a ''maritime'' aura.

''ATS'' has more embryonic, tribal drumming with various beautiful vocals and witch-like chanting supplied by the group. Like ''UJA'', the strength of this piece is the embryonic developing of the piece. It's so organic, you'd think the piece was breathing. The ebbing and flowing of the piece is what draws the listener in, just to see if the piece can get turbulent (because it sounds like it's heading in that direction). The payoff is a semi-loud trip hop/J-pop variant of the theme.

''IOA'' closes the album (saving the best piece for last here) with the worst moment of the album; Yoshimi singing off key. You can relax; that part only lasts for a few seconds as we get splendid three-part vocals over a trippy guitar line. We later hear that guitar line slowed down at the end in a more tropical styling.

I saved the best for last as ''SAI'' really lives up to being the big epic of the album. It starts of with some of the most excellent guitar textures painting beautiful mental pictures this side of the post-rock genre. This is before OOIOO decides to pervert that them into a menacing electronic-tribal thing with Yoshimi giving a demented lead vocal performance while the backup singers create somewhat of a sayonce. However, by the one-third mark, we've shifted to a bass-led tribal theme that gets sped up at the sound of Yoshimi chirping schizophrenically. This new sped-up theme carries a ton of intensity as it constantly builds on itself, and you get the feeling like you're being hunted by a madman. And best yet, there's a short pause before reviving the theme in a different context. As soon as the madness is over, some of the best guitar work graces the ending which is a reprise of the first theme. Well worth sitting through.

Surprisingly, TAIGA has this unique electronic/tribal/J-pop sound throughout the album despite sound checking many other genres. Unless you're familiar with some post-rock, this album will sound like NOTHING you've ever heard before, and that may drive listeners away. I'm sure many progsters will listen to TAIGA, only to reject it as impenetrable experimentalism with acquired taste vocals and unnecessary genre checks. Don't get too discouraged if TAIGA doesn't floor you on the first listen; these pieces are very difficult to grasp and it takes patience in order to understand this bizarre world of an album. I'm one of those rare exceptions that DID get floored almost immediately because I don't like to keep hearing the same type of music over and over again.

If you're a musical risk-taker, then here's your adrenaline fix. TAIGA is one of those ''rough'' sounding albums that possesses this mysterious beauty to it. This album holds little in comparions to a large portion of the PA groups, even in the RIO section. Take a chance and get your feet wet with this; sooner or later, everything will make sense and you'll start chanting along with Yoshimi in ''UMO''.

A quirky, yet dizzyingly satisfying masterpice of progressive music.

 Armonico Hewa by OOIOO album cover Studio Album, 2009
3.15 | 7 ratings

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Armonico Hewa
OOIOO RIO/Avant-Prog

Review by DamoXt7942
Forum & Site Admin Group RIO/Avant/Zeuhl & Neo Teams

3 stars There are full of dreams for the artwork of the sleeve and sharp-edged ensemble explosions for the metallically sparkling disc.

As honestly I say, this is my first OOIOO album, the sleeve design of which could attract my heart and let me purchase it. However, as you can imagine, the content is not a fairy tale. Suggest this is a story that a girl, who is entombed under the dark town, tries to flap her wings and fly away for another world of brightness. And maybe each song shows a situation she struggles in, runs away from, or from another sky glimpses, the dark town. Their sounds are very lyrical and passionate - especially the drumming by Yoshimi, with various elements of African, Oriental, heavy, jazzy...can seize the leadership of the sounds, the musical style, and this outfit itself. The story goes with OOIOO's avantgarde, antique, African beats, shots and shouts. Loud but a bit warm guitar sounds do show each scene appropriately. Keyboard ones are sometimes dreamy but sometimes keen and brutal. Yoshimi's voice has fruitful passion but ill-matched fragrance - as if a perfumed smell comes from a matured whisky with estery, woody, salty flavour. On the whole the story is hard but worthy to complete for her. And this album itself is terrific too. ;-)

Thanks to Geck0 for the artist addition.

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