Sunday, 22 March 2015

Beyond The Clear Air (Midas, 1988)

I'm in love with Midas' debut album, a Japanese prog pearl, from which I introduce here the epic title track. It's a rather long suite (some 18 minutes) starting with a slow, evocative intro played by keys and electric violin, both essential instruments in Midas' music. The following sung section goes on the same melancholy vein, with a hint of celtic atmosphere in it. Then the giga comes in and Eigo Utoh's violin gets fast and furious. All this section is high tempo with keyboardist Eishyo Lynn on the forefront. He also rules next atmospheric long bridge, something midway between space rock and pastoral folk.

This album was re-released by Musea  in 2009 with a bonus track.

Actually these musicians made up their own kind of prog, winding and arcane, just like some old Japanese paintings. The finale includes a sweet sung passage - I also like the piano here - and a fully symphonic wall of sound, plus a coda reprise of the intro. I bet you won't regret the minutes you'll spend listening to this. Maybe you'll try the whole album then. Good idea.

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