Flower Travelling Band was Japan's answer to Led Zeppelin meeting Blue Cheer and Black Sabbath at the Ash Ra Temple. Simply put, they played grand, spacey, tripped-out hard rock with a riffy base that was only two steps removed from the blues, but their manner of interpreting those steps came from an acid trip. Flower Travelling Band was an entity unto itself. There are five tracks on this set, originally released in 1971 as the band's second album proper. It has been reissued on CD by WEA International in Japan, with the cover depicting a silhouette drawing of the Buddha in meditative equipoise filled in with sketches of an inner universe mandala of the sacred Mount Meru, stupas, and the hash smoking caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland, Japanese sci-fi robot cartoons, and more. And the music is reflected in this inner universal realm on five different sections of Satori. From power chords to Eastern-tinged, North African, six-string freakouts, to crashing tom toms, to basses blasting into the red zone, Satori is a journey to the center of someplace that seems familiar but has never before been visited. It is a new sonic universe constructed from cast-off elements of the popular culture of the LSD generation. Forget everything you know about hard rock from the 1970s until you've put this one through your headphones. It's monolithic, expansive, flipped to wig city, and full of a beach blanket bong-out muscularity. In other words, this is a "real" classic and worth any price you happen to pay for it.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Thom Jurek