Kazu Matsui

Wheels of the Sun

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Best known as husband and producer of wife Keiko Matsui, Kazu has quietly become one of the genre's most interesting studio craftsmen through his work with Porcupine and others on his own label. His 1991 debut Sign of the Snow Crane was a tender showcase for his haunting shakuhachi playing, but it failed to ignite the fire his other productions offered. In making the far superior, infinitely more rhythmic and melodic Wheels of the Sun, he found the solution: collaborate with David Lindley, the thoughtful blues-rock guitarist who perfectly balances the spiritual beauty of the flute. Lindley adds spark, groove, and unpredictable energy to more cooking tracks like "Red Sea," yet can provide understatement when Matsui focuses on a sweeping symphonic turn. Achieving an effortless cross between different cultures, the Eastern heritage of his flute is complemented by guests like Keiko, Brian Bromberg, Steve Reid, and Porcupine's Bernie Dresel.

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