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NAZORANAI (STEPHEN O'MALLEY / KEIJI HAINO / OREN AMBARCHI) - The Most painful Time happens only once has it arrived already... ?

Format: do-LP
Label & Cat.Number: Ideologic Organ SOMA 018
Release Year: 2014
Note: second album by this project of STEPHEN O'MALLEY (SUNN O))), KEIJI HAINO, and OREN AMBARCHI, with recordings made July 2013 in Birmingham, filed under: apocalyptic free rock
Price (incl. 19% VAT): €20.00


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"Keiji Haino (guitar, vocals & synth), Stephen OMalley (bass guitar) & Oren Ambarchi (battery).
Recorded by Chris Fullard at CCSO, Birmingham 9th July 2013. Edited by Oren Ambarchi & Stephen OMalley 2013-14. Mixed by Joe Talia & Oren Ambarchi at Chinatown, Melbourne February 2014. Mastering / vinyl cut by Rashad Becker at Dubplates & Mastering, Berlin June 2014. Calligraphy by Keiji Haino.
Nazoranai comprises three gentleman, three friends and three fans of each others creative output. 'the most painful time happens only once has it arrived already..?' is the second release from Nazoranai, a power proposition made up of three sound/song heavyweights: Haino Keiji, Oren Ambarchi and Stephen O'Malley (no introductions necessary, intimidation checked in at the door).
Recorded by Chris Fullard at CCSO, Birmingham 9th July 2013 'the most painful time...' expands the trio's devastating explorations of improvised rock based shapes. The opening track 'you should look closely those shattered spells never attaining embodiment as prayer they are born here again you should look closely those shattered spells never attaining embodiment as prayer they are born here again' hurtles the listener straight in the abyss with an epic 18 + minutes off apocalyptic free rock. This is music on the threshold, a searing landscape where soaring guitars circle amongst a pounding minimal tribal rhythm. 'will not follow your hoax called history' lurches out at the listener offering a hand as a guide for this invented netherworld. The multi limbed who is making the time rot' documents our hosts in absolute freeform mode, wildly rummaging the remains of exploded structure. Finally the title track swings the pendulum back to earth in the guise of structure, base, rhythm and song. Hovering between annihilation and brutality 'the most painful time happens only once has it arrived already..?' is a sonic sinkhole where the unrestrained improvised peaks are indelibly stamped with the unique traits deployed by these three titians of rock and experimentation." [label info]


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"Elsewhere on the site you'll find the new SUNNO))) + Scott Walker collaboration, while this album is the 2nd effort to see half of the SUNNO))) duo teamed up with Japanese psych shaman Keiji Haino. We're hoping that this somehow means that we'll soon see a Scott Walker + Keiji Haino team-up, too... There's not too many degrees of separation left, c'mon!
But, that's not what this review is about. It's about the sophomore outing from the in-and-of-itself awesome Nazoranai trio, featuring guitarist/vocalist Haino, bassist Stephen O'Malley of SUNNO))), and on percussion, the ubiquitous Oren Ambarchi - who plays with Haino in another trio also well, with Jim O'Rourke instead of O'Malley. O'boy, these guys do like each other for dance partners, recall also that recently Ambarchi and O'Malley got together with Randall Dunn, too...
Anyway, we super duper dug the 1st Nazoranai, as did a lot of you, it's gone out of print (too bad if you missed it) but this is a fine follow-up, again allowing (as if there was any choice) Keiji Haino's musical personality/aesthetic to take the fore: ultra intense dark psychedelic out-rock improv, made all the darker and heavier by the presence of O'Malley, as you can imagine.
As usual with anything Haino related, the track titles are long and cryptic, starting with "You Should Look Closely Those Shattered Spells Never Attaining Embodiment As Prayer They Are Born Here Again" (whew!) and the tracks are long, too (that one approaches 19 minutes). All four cuts here are fairly heavy and harrowing, featuring plenty of grinding droning guitars (abetted by some synth played by Haino too). Ambarchi's drums skitter and shake, Haino offers up the gut wrenched vocal lamentations like nobody else, and O'Malley keeps the bottom end solidly way, way down in the abyss. The rapport these three possess is evident, and emotive, whether whilst bringing the freeform freakout action to a boil, or when they lock into more structured passages - as on the album's final cut and title track, another 19-minute epic, that rides a lurching, repetitive rhythm reminding us of some of Haino's legendary band Fushitsusha's 'rockier' moments. Needless to say, recommended to all with fearless ears, poetic hearts and/or sorrowful souls." [Aquarius Records]