Meet Reviewer Damian Erskine ~
Satoko Fujii Orchestra Tokyo
woah.. This ain’t your grand-daddies big band album. The most obvious comparison (just to give you a ball-park idea) is John Zorn. But that really isn’t very accurate… This 15 piece band sounds more classically trained to my ears. It’s obvious that these players can burn, but the temptation to really “blow” is usually surrendered to the higher calling of texture and flow. Generally, what bugs me about stuff that is very ‘outside’ is that it typically sounds, to me, to have very little cohesion. Random notes disguised as art.
This album is quite the opposite for me! I listened all the way through completely entranced with texture, soundscapes and some of the most beautiful dissonant harmonies I’ve come across. Truly a masterful accomplishment.
Satoko splits her time between NY and Japan and has many different groups for her music. You’d be well served to pay attention and show up if you ever see her playing anywhere near you. This music is a force of nature!