Friday, January 18, 2013
RE PLAY~[SPECIAL] SHINGETSU--SHINGETSU 
Considering this was a 1979 release, it contains some very nice sounding music. Shingetsu are a synphonic band, with a vocalist who sings in Japanese. He has a very pleasant voice, and sings smoothly over the softer passages of music, at times sounding almost like a female singer.
The band blends softer acoustical musics with keyboard driven progrock, this combination has given them a dubbing as a Genesis styled band. They will not sound like a clone of those prog legends, but that's not such a bad reference point to describe them. This is an album that is mood setting, one will want to be alone with it to capture the many nuances that occur song after song, there are no displays of instrumental fortitude, but the musicians are quite good. It's very vocal heavy prog, with a lot of accentuation on creating songs of adventure.
I enjoy the bands more uptempo side more so than the more contemplative side, yet the faster stuff is few and between, relinquishing the bulk of the music to moods of melancholy, peacefulness, and quiescence. As some Japanese progressive rock bands go, many are offering long passages of instrumentation, which allowed the non-Japanese speaking listeners enough music to indulge their progressive interests, however, given the amount of singing on this album, the stressing of lyrics has priority, and this fact may alienate many progfans.
If you can get by on vocal tone alone, being sung over a subtle progressive backdrop, this is not a bad cd, particularly if you enjoy Neo, or the simpler symphonic bands, if you happen to understand Japanese, that's all the much better. [proggnosis]
Hailed as one of the greatest Japanese progressive rock bands of all time, SHINGETSU ('new moon') arrived in the Japan music scene in the late 70s to carry the torch which seemed to have been left behind in England. Led by the 'Japanese Peter Gabriel', Makoto Kitayama, with his deep, wavering, mournful vocal, SHINGETSU stirred up some great press with their cinematic progressive sound, which rightly gained them comparisons to peak-time GENESIS. Consisting of Makoto Kitayama, Akira Hanamoto, Naoya Takahahi, Shizuo Suzuki and Haruhiko Tsuda, this promising band unfortunately only lived long enough to make one studio album, followed in later years by two live albums which nevertheless featured some unreleased performances.
Their one album proper, the eponymous "Shingetsu", is no less than a masterpiece of symphonic prog, with the soft organ/synth soundscapes, tasteful use of mellotron, and 12-string guitar passages reminiscent of the softer UK bands of the 70s. Kitayama's haunting vocal and intriguing lyrics, however, give SHINGETSU a distinctive edge that is hard to find anywhere else in music even to this day.
A seminal progressive band; not too long a career to get to grips with, yet richly rewarding.[progarchives]
Studio Album, released in 1979
Songs / Tracks Listing
1. Oni (9:32)
2. The other side of morning (4:12)
3. Influential street (4:25)
4. Afternoon ~ After the rain (4:08)
5. Fragments of the dawn (7:06)
6. Freeze (3:04)
7. Night collector (5:04)
8. Return of the night (5:36)
Total Time: 43:01
- Akira Hanamoto / keyboards
- Makoto Kitayama / lead vocals
- Shizuo Suzuki / bass
- Naoya Takahashi / drums
- Haruhiko Tsuda / guitar
+ Takashi Kokubo / synthesizers programming
- Hiroshi Morimura / saxophone (4)
Thanks to "sasha716" for this. appreciated. And to 'ROIO' for the upgrade
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