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Hugh Hopper - Hugh Hopper & Yumi Hara Cawkwell: Dune CD (album) cover


Hugh Hopper


Canterbury Scene

2.42 | 8 ratings

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3 stars HUMI were a "short-lived" (very sadly for all fans ... the reason is well-known though) two-piece experimental music project, formed by Hugh HOPPER (bass, loops, electronics; ex-Soft Machine) and Yumi HARA CAWKWELL (voices, keyboards, percussion) in 2007. They released one (and only) album "Dune" in 2008 via Moonjune Records, that could be crystallized with two tremendous talents for uncivilized strange experimental music scene. They could have gone on a tour all around the world along with this fascinating album, but very sadly this (dreamy dream) tour could not complete because of Hugh's illness (leukemia), and this "Dune" had got to be his last studio creation. We can feel his magnificent scale via this work obviously.

Amazingly, this is HUMI's creation, not Hugh & Yumi's one. That is, in all songs of this album, not that one player plays with supporting another, but with stimulating another like an actress / actor upon a theatre stage or in a movie screen, let me say. Yumi's terrific keyboard play and mysterious, unexampled voices, Hugh's deep bass and refined electronic sounds throughout the whole production can be approved by almost all reviewers, and furthermore, this album notifies me how important an actress / actor can show and tell her / his play depending on the situation or atmosphere.

Taking the second track "Shiranui" for example ... Shiranui is a Japanese monster or illusory phenomenon (Sea Fire ... the subtitle of this song) that may be brought by the monster everyone says, and we can easily feel such an eerie air via Hugh's weird synthesizer shots and Yumi's scattered but graceful piano touches. But at least for me, in this song Yumi's piano sounds like a pretty girl playing with pleasure upon an extensive and ruined dune produced by Hugh's magnificence. Extremely more obvious in the three-piece "Dune" suite - Hugh's heavy, deep bass kicks can be compared to the huge desert, his weird elektronika to sand stirred up by a wind, and Yumi's keyboard sounds to stardust, and her voices to hot, dry, but mysteriously comfortable air over the dune ... in my mind.

Let me emphasize, Yumi's play is very eclectic and colourful ... wearing a sensual expression in "Hopeful Impressions Of Happiness", a serious and solemn one like a shrine maiden in "Seki No Gohonmatsu" (in Izumo, Japan ... anyway), dark green wind-blowing (very tough and painful) in "Scattered Forest", large drops of snow falling onto Hugh's eccentric rocky tract "Awayuki". And yeah, I love especially the last track "Futa", where all (both Hugh's and Yumi's plays) should be well-broken and scattered into piece ... addictive psychedelia beyond expression. Always stimulating each other aggressively ... this is the most important and impressive point on HUMI.

Kudos for them, and the late Hugh.

DamoXt7942 | 3/5 |


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