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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Fujiya & Miyagi @ Chop Suey

posted by on October 28 at 11:44 AM

If nothing else, Fujiya & Miyagi proved last night that the more I hear it, the better the archetypal motorik groove sounds. That two-thirds of the Brighton, England quartet’s set reminded me of Can’s “Mother Sky” should have annoyed. Instead, we—all 300 or so of us; not bad for a Monday night—couldn’t get enough of this aerodynamic-as-fuck rhythm, which, as I’ve probably written many times before, induces a sense of easy, swift, perpetual motion down the carefree highway (Gordon Lightfoot reference unintentional, but it’s a great song; you should check it out).

F&M cruised with no-nonsense precision through 16 cuts over 65 minutes, pretty evenly splitting the content between Transparent Things and the new Lightbulbs. Their songs—really, more lean boogies and stark rambles than traditional songs—have a deceptive funkiness. The gorgeous “Goosebumps” is maybe the one exception; it’s a wistful ballad that recalls first-LP King Crimson or Harmonia at their most pastoral.

Visually, these pasty Brits are about as sexy as an umlaut, but their music possesses a sly sensuality (enhanced by David Best’s sibilant whisper) that gets the ladies yelping and gyrating hips. With their sparse, efficient crispness, F&M make most groups sound bloated and needlessly fussy. When they finally ratchet up the intensity during the encore (especially “Hundreds & Thousands”), it had an incredible impact after an hour of sotto-voce, streamlined funk.

When executed well (as Fujiya & Miyagi do), motorik-flecked krautrock—even faux krautrock—sounds immune to the ravages of time and jadedness, chugging in eternal youthfulness toward the horizon line.

“In One Ear and Out the Other” live

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1

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Posted by chop suey! neumosomoes! | October 28, 2008 4:22 PM
2

Bank robbers rob banks because that's where the money is, dipshit.

Posted by Eric Grandy | October 28, 2008 4:41 PM

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