Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Dzyan - 1972 - Dzyan


01. Emptiness (9:39)
02. The bud awakes (2:57)
03. The wisdom (10:21)
04. Foghat's work (6:31)
05. Hymn (1:12)
06. Dragonsong (7:31)
07. Things we're looking for (1:52)
08. Back to Earth (4:11)

- Jochen Leuschner / lead vocals, congas, percussion
- Harry Krämer / acoustic & electric guitars
- Gerd-Bock Ehrmann / tenor sax
- Reinhard Karwatky / bass, double bass, arranger
- Ludwig Braum / drums, percussion

- Günter Kühlwein / organ & electric piano (2,3,7)

Recorded at Rhein-Main-Studio, Frankfurt/M. 1972.

Named after the Indian sacred book of creation, this (at first) studio experiment recorded very quickly their first album (within two months of their creation) and it was released on the small Aronda label in April 72. Graced with an impressive artwork, the quintet's album develops an impressive sung jazz-rock that embodied almost every aspects of the genre, but there is a general Canterbury feel pervading through the album.

Dzyan's jazz-rock spectrum ranges from the full-blown early fusion ala Nucleus (the opening Emptiness) to the much rockier Dragonsong, the electronic and cello Hymn and the very vocal Bud Awakes (where the group shows an excellence sense of harmony). The first side of the albums holds two major tracks (one of which is slightly ethnic-sounding and strange: Wisdom) sandwiching a short one and is clearly my favourite. The excellent Fohat's Work (not really Gong here, although the sax.) is maybe the album's most accessible track with clear-cut solos, while Dragonsong has vocals that can resemble Wyatt's in SM's Third or Rock Bottom, but this dramatic piece can be considered like the highlight of the album as Bock's sax reminds of Malherbe and Karwalky's bass lines are driving the track at 100 MPH cruising speed. Comes a short Wyatt-esque interlude and then the album closes on the Rocking Back To Earth, indeed making come back from a great fusion trip as the artwork indicates.

By the time of their second album's recording, the group was completely different, being just a trio with only bassist Karwalki (who was the main writer anyway) left, but the sound of the group remained jazz-rock but veered much more towards experimental jazz mixed with ethnic music. Although this debut album is non-representative of Dzyan, it might just be their most accessible and a good intro to the band. 

1 comment:

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