Yume Bitsu - "The Golden Vessyl of Sound"
(K Records 2002, KLP 137)
From Aural Innovations #22 (January 2003)
Portland, Oregon space rockers Yume Bitsu return with their latest offering of improvised explorations of the otherworldly city of Drysstn, via that mysterious link to the creative world they call The Vessyl.
The band, consisting of guitarists Adam Forkner and Franz Pritchard, keyboardist Alex Bundy, and drummer Jason Anderson have always relied on improvisation as their main compositional tool. This time out, the band goes for a completely spontaneous excursion (with only the occasional addition of vocals in post production). Forgoing some of the darker tones of their previous albums, this time Yume Bitsu explores a beautiful sunshine world of golden tones and amber brilliance.
The tracks are untitled, because the band felt it would be contrived to apply titles to the improvisations. From the slow build to a raging storm of noisy radiance that opens up the album on Track 1, to Track 2ís jungle-like ambience, to the simple, wistful guitar and yearning vocals of Track 3, to the electronic pulsing flow of Track 4, to the brief churning ambience of Track 5, each piece is distinct and picturesque, conjuring up distant dream worlds in the mindís eye of the listener. The highlight of the set, though, is the 18-minute journey of Track 6. Incorporating the sounds of trombone and alto clarinet into the mix, the piece shifts from mysterious twilit realms into jazz tinged excursions through sunset cities of the far distant future, or maybe the distant past. The piece finally breaks into a laidback jam, set to a tic-toc rim-shot rhythm. Swirling electronics and mellow horns meander through rustling dreamscapes taking the piece to its glorious conclusion. This is followed by the warm beauty of Track 7, a tale of a young prince of Drysstn, as heís carried on the backs of mothmen with gilded wings. Another journey into the honey colored sunset. The album closes with Track 8, a deeply reverbed guitar meditation, and the freaky experimental pop of Track 9.
Relentlessly creative, unafraid of challenging sonic textures, Yume Bitsu invokes an enticing mix of shimmering space rock and illuminating ambience that shines with the brilliance of a glorious summer day on some distant, beautiful world far removed from our own.
Visit Yume Bitsu at their web site: http://www.kpunk.com/yumebitsu/.
Reviewed by Jeff Fitzgerald