HISATO HIGUCHI
2004 11 2005 4

HISATO HIGUCHI
She

[Ghost Disc, www.ghost.readymade.jp]


Japanese guitarist Hisato Higuchi makes music that wraps itself with utter silence and stillness. He doesn't rock out or get into any elongated guitar solos. He doesn't care much for noise or dissonance. Rather, he's a fan of the glistening and the glittering motion of his own guitar strings being picked at. Over the length of these two releases, he mesmerizes the listener with a keen ear for detail.
Recorded live, "2004 11 2005 4" is a brief 35 minute study of [mostly] solo guitar. Sadafumi Sugai provides some sampler work on one track [the slowly evolving "Hikari No Rakka"], while Yashihisa Suzuki plays some discreet percussion on a very calm "Hate" and the loudest number in the bunch, the closing "Manazashi". When Hisato sings - as he does on "Borei" - his chants are mellow, withdrawn and extremely meditative. In fact, the entire record is an exercise in meditation. Bluesy, calm and most of all chillingly austere, this record is one of the stand-out live recordings I'd heard all year.

Though "She" doesn't differ much stylistically from the previous live recording, it is an even more sombre and delicate record. This being the debut record from Hisato Higuchi, it affords the listener an ear into the world this guitarist inhabits. A highly meditative attempt, complete with elusive vocals and faintest guitar picking, it shows that there is a place for those players that don't fit any particular mould. There are two drawbacks. Its mere 22 minute length means the listener can't get fully enraptured in these sounds. The other issue I have is the pacing. The final two pieces - "Ghosts. Ghost" and "Sister. Girl" - are the more experimental ones in this bunch. Complete with their high-pitched guitar cacophony and stirring feedback, they demolish the lovely song-forms and the mood created by the first part of this EP. Otherwise, "She" is a fine debut, worth seeking out.

- Tom Sekowski


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+ OREN AMBARCHI & ROBBIE AVENAIM - Clockwork - Live Recording 21.4.99
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>> HISATO HIGUCHI - 2004 11 2005 4 / She
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+ ZE EDUARDO / JACK WALRATH QUARTET - Bad Guys / MICHAEL ATTIAS - Credo / JOE FIEDLER TRIO - Plays the Music of Albert Mangelsdorff / BERNARDO SASSETTI TRIO 2 - Ascent

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