S. Fujii & Otomo Y. - Perpetual Motion

Mike Flynn, JazzWise


Another month, yet another Satoko Fujii album. But for those of you wearied or worried by the pianist's seemingly inexhaustible energy and endless release schedule… fear not! Perpetual Motion (an apt title, it turns out) is something rather different. Yoshide, like Fujii, is a prolific, much-recorded musician, but this is the first time these two highly respected avant-jazz figures have worked together.

Any worries that the duo might be tempted to rest on their laurels are dispelled almost as soon as this live album (recorded at the famed Pitt Inn club in Tokyo) kicks off. Not only does Fujii's crystalline piano prove the perfect foil to Yoshide's clangorous (and sometimes thunderous) sheets of guitar sound, but the two musicians bounce off each other beautifully. The great joy of listening to (or better still, watching) free music has always been witnessing the exchange of ideas – and here the two musicans react to each other with dizzying, dazzling speed. Perpetual Motion is an exciting 48-minute, four-part, non-linear journey into territory that's known but under-explored. Are you coming along?