Ruins makes music that sounds like shards of preset Casio keyboard demo songs re-assembled with surgical precision. The constantly changing rhythms and psychotic melodic somersaulting are solely executed here (hence the augmentation of the Ruins moniker) by main Ruin/drummer/everything else Yoshida Tatsuya. This record lies somewhere on the sonic horizon betwixt 70's prog-pop like Yes, classic NY/JP inspired genre fission such as Naked City and glossy 80's jazz crossover. I suppose you either like it or you don't, as it doesn't lend itself to casual listening. One undeniable fact about this music, however, is the purely virtuosic qualities of the performance. The results are stupefying.
Boasting over 20 tracks this release is a brain-melting ride. Every song twists and turns through time signatures and chord progressions, daring the listener to hold on for dear life. Some highlights are the insane "Baxcemgilasz", which begins with a sample of some mallet instrument and immediately drops into a demented keyboard-led verse, sounding not unlike Mr. Bungle (a group certainly indebted to Ruins). "Glaschzenck" comes a bit later, beginning with a rising/falling keyboard sequence and turning into one of the more melodic moments found here. In fact, every instrument seems to be arpeggiating on this record — each song is constructed of hyper cyclical sound events. The final two tracks are titled "Progrock" and "Hardrock" — songs made up of riff after riff of obscure and not-so-obscure songs smashed together (in typical Ruins fashion) into wholly new pieces of sound art. "Progrock" boasts tidbits of Pink Floyd, Yes, and Rush, while "Hardrock" re-assembles Thin Lizzy, Deep Purple, and Led Zeppelin, to name a few. Not surprisingly the differences in these genres disappear when filtered through the bizarre, pristine sound world of Ruins.
The most interesting music is not usually for everyone, and respect must be given to the artists who deal with sound on their own terms. Visionaries are ultimately responsible for the progression of musical forms and sometimes spawn new ones as a result. Ruins have been making records since the 80's, and Yoshida has himself been a catalyst for so much ground breaking sonic information. Like the Ramones, Ruins (this time Yoshida "alone") have created their own musical world: meticulously groomed and ever re-affirming itself, culminating in yet another galaxy in the kaleidoscopic sound universe that is Ruins.
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