Tatsu Aoki

Needless to Say

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Bassist Tatsui Aoki has been hanging out on the vanguard American and European music and film scenes since the beginning of the '80s. This CD, released by Sound Aspects in 1992, was recorded during the late '80s at the height of Aoki's frenzied activity as an experimental and jazz bassist who worked with sonics as much as he did the upright. All 12 pieces here are doctored electronically, either with drones being fed through a tape or digital delay system or by effects added to certain tones to elongate or trip them up. It doesn't matter in the end. Needless to Say is an album that explores not only the timbral and textural richness of the bass and Aoki's particular skill in playing it, but more importantly engages the instrument at the level of the art. That is to say that here is a recording on which Aoki's solo playing interacts with music and reveals how musical he is as an improviser. The answer? Plenty. Tracks like "Waltz for a Blimp," the gorgeously swinging "Freckles" parts one and two, and the stomping, greasy, layered-bucket funk of "Funk-A" are only partial highlights on a recording full of bright moments and wonderfully human and humorous ideas.

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