Hôzan Yamamoto is surely one of the most versatile and most known shakuhachi players today, along with Kôhachiro Miyata, Katsuya Yokoyama, and Goro Yamaguchi. He made his name in the West, particularly with his participation on Ravi Shankar's CD, Towards the Rising Sun; a classic. He also performed with Jean-Pierre Rampal, Gary Peacock, and many other musicians in many types of music. With this CD, Yamamoto offers us a CD with only three pieces this time: two traditional and one contemporary number written in a traditional style. These pieces are for voice, shamisen, koto, and shakuhachi (name given for the style of music for this particular ensemble). Interestingly, the third piece, "Midare," is originally a koto piece and recorded for koto solo. On this CD, we have the rare opportunity to hear a version of this piece for a Jiuta ensemble. Among the musicians playing with him, there is on koto Toshiko Yonekawa, who is the current Living National Treasure for this instrument. The charm of Japanese ensemble music in all its beauty!
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AllMusic Review by Bruno Deschênes