Sometimes you just need a win. When the events of the world catch up with you and you’re working every day to try and stay ahead of the game, you need an outlet to let loose. On my way from Albany, NY there was traffic everywhere down to and in Manhattan due to a certain political figure, who has been causing a lot of problems for the world, coming to town and throwing the city into a fit on the roads with streets begin blocked and traffic having to go around him. I was worried about getting to Rough Trade in time for the show, but the concert gods helped me out and got me there and it was a much-needed wave of psychedelia to heal the soul.
Kikagaku Moyo hail from Japan and are part of a new wave of psychedelic rock and roll that is coming out all over the world. The five-piece act are one of the tightest bands playing live today. This was their second time ever playing New York City and it was a packed affair with Rough Trade selling out. Every concert-goer watched in amazement as the band tore through an hour set covering songs from Forest of Lost Children, House in the Tall Grass, and their latest effort Stone Garden. The smiles that they not only gave each other, but to the crowd, were great as they were truly thankful to be playing and having a great time of it.
Lead guitarist Daoud Popal jumped around the stage and head banged while playing when the music became more frantic in the jams. Ryu Kurosawa’s hands flew on his electric sitar, an instrument rarely seen in the states, making noises come out of it that were beautiful. Tomo Katsurada’s vocals were gorgeous and when he let loose on the guitar it was awe inspiring. Go Kirosawa’s drumming was sharp the entire night and Kotsuguy’s bass playing kept the band with one foot on the ground. They played a one song encore, a brand-new tune, and whipped the crowd into one more frenzy for the evening. They could have played another hour of music and people wouldn’t have complained. I doubt the next run of shows in the US will be in venues this small, word travels fast in music communities when a band is this good live.
Opening the show saw two acts play two very different versions of psychedelic rock. First Jason Killinger played a solo electric freak out set, employing many loops over his guitar work. Making use of the floor, the mic stand, and his amplifiers, he moved the guitar all over the stage to get the desired sounds for his music. With some of the music being extremely quiet, the crowd attentively watched and you could have heard a pin drop. It was a wild opening set and was followed by Mountain Movers, a four-piece full of fuzzy psychedelic tunes. Throughout the set the drums and bass droned ever forward as both guitarists played wave after wave of chords and solos above it, creating a sonic wall of sound. Their songs were full of power and they are going to be playing many local shows in the next few weeks. Catch them if you’re a fan of psych-rock, you will not be disappointed.
Article: Bryan Lasky