Absolut Null Punkt – Live In Japan

Absolut Null Punkt (ANP) is the long time running off and on collaboration between Japanese sound artist Kazuyuki Kishino (aka KK. Null) and percussionist Seijiro Murayama. ‘Live in Japan’ consists of six live-recorded improvisations at various spots in Japan; released by Important Records.

To this listener, ‘Live in Japan’ is purifying. Bored with tightly sequenced electronic music, sick to death of the pop verse-chorus format, and tired of predictable styles of music in general, ANP offer a radical departure. There is little if any easy listening found on ‘Live In Japan.’ Instead, what’s here is raw and explosive. Two of the six tracks (3 & 5) include the footnote: “decomposed by kk.null at prima natura studio”, otherwise, I would guess that the majority of the material here has received no additional studio work after being recorded live on the spot (other than 3 & 5, perhaps). As ad hoc or one time only takes, the unplanned/unforeseen nature of these pieces takes the foreground. It’s likely that not everybody will enjoy, or even be able to tolerate, this degree of uncertainty, however.

With KK. Null’s varied noise work and Murayama’s improv percussion, including jazz-like styling at times, if we were looking to tag a label onto ANP’s output we’d probably be safe with: avant-garde. There are certainly times when the improvisations enter areas of power-electronics and industrial noise; rhythmic industrial even (track 3). Still other tracks take different directions, or multiple directions, as track 6 does in over twenty-one minutes in length. In total: a demanding but definitely worthwhile collection of tracks, likely to appeal to a discerning audience.

artist: Absolut Null Punkt
label: Important Records
details: 6 tracks, 49 minutes, 2004 [imprec029]