"Since the turn of the century, Tokyo’s Suzuki Junzo has channelled gentle blues, space rock, and his homeland’s uniquely mental take on freeform psychedelic noise into a momentous body of work, which should see him ranked alongside Japan’s heavyweight cosmic jokers, the likes of Takashi Mizutani, Kawabata Makoto and Asahito Nanjo. The tape label imprint of Hebden Bridge based promoter Was Ist Das? is capping off a killer recent run of releases with If I Die Before I Wake, a stunning addition to Junzo’s discography. Side A contains three lengthy acid jams, recorded in studio with drummer Takahashi Ikuro, who has previously worked with the likes of Kousokuya, Fushitsusha, LSD March, and High Rise to name but a few. The stonking loud nine minute opener, ‘Crossing The Valley Of The Cosmic Death Demons’, truly lives up to the promise of its killer title, with Junzo spinning crazed six-string fireworks over Ikuro’s crazed free time flurries. ‘Les Visiteurs du Soir’ meanwhile, tickles the edges of the atmosphere with strange distant noises, manic percussion rumbles and the sound of Junzo seemingly pulling his guitar to pieces, reconstituted and warped through delay effects, sounding very like the freakiest moments in Germany’s history of music for acid eaters. The title track follows too, bringing side A to an unsettling close as a myriad of cymbal washes and atonal guitar drones consume the stereo field like wildfire for twelve horrifying minutes.
The flipside contains a solo Junzo show recorded at the Fortress Callosum in San Francisco last year. Junzo coerces galaxies of colour from his guitar for the instrumental first 20 minutes. Beautiful plucks sing into reverb chambers, squealing shards of feedback amass and slowly grow into blunter sonic instruments, and shaky storm clouds engulf all in attendance as Junzo freaks out. The closing seven minutes segue into a gothic bluesy death hymn titled ‘4 Mosche Di Velluto Grigio’ (presumably after Dario Argento’s 1971 movie of the same name about a musician stalked by a murderer). Simply put, this is one of the finest documents of dark psychedelia and blues-riddled noise in existence." - Tristan Bath, The Quietus
Online bidding ends at 11:59pm BST on 13th April 2020. There will no longer be a live room auction. We will contact anyone who has won on the 14th of April. Winners can either collect in person or have their item posted to them, though unfortunately due to the current situation we are unable to do this immediately. We will be in touch as soon as OTO is open again and we are able to post items or arrange a collection. Thank you.