Japanese import CD
Japanese leading trumpet player Terumasa Hino's "Hi-Nology" is his most commercially successful album and in fact his start to international fame.Released in 1969,it was one of the very first fusion album recorded by country's artists and released in Japan.Sometimes described as "Miles Davis undone step" in reality it isn't that.
Terumasa Hino started as mainstream jazz trumpeter and in 1968 switched from hard bop to more modern post-bop forming Hino-Kikuchi Quintet with pianist Masabumi Kikuchi. Their debut,recorded same year,was released in 1969 only, and few month later Terumasa Hino releases "Hi-Nology" with same band,just with different pianist (acoustic pianist Kikuchi has been changed with Hiromasa Suzuki on electric piano).The concept of electric fusion was just in the air around, and Hino was obviously heavily influenced by Davis re-tuning his quintet for playing more advanced sound.But if Miles very soon brewed jazz improvisation with psychedelic rock jamming,Terumasa stayed deeply rooted in mainstream jazz building his fusion on boppish basis.Miles concentrated his interest on textures against form, Hino demonstrates perfectly framed and structured songs in mainstream jazz tradition.
Released on the peak of fusion "revolutionary" popularity, this album was a true success between both yesterday's jazz adepts searching for new sound and part of rock fans,since very jazzy by its nature album's compositions were not so different from tuneful well-structured rock songs (thanks to thunder-like Motohiko Hino drumming Hi-Nology sounds not all that different from some rock albums of the time).
So,representing just a different (and generally more conservative by its nature) leg of just-born fusion comparing with Miles Davis music of the moment, Hino's quintet plays music which has born under Davis influence. The real reason why it sometimes sounds more advanced is that that hard-bop rooted Hino is more open to another huge moment's influence - free jazz. Miles was known by his negative point of view towards free jazz (what not always means his music isn't influenced by it), Terumasa Hino saw free jazz as part of his music (even if in reality Hino's music as rule is never such free as Miles'). As a result on "Hi-Nology" one can find lot of freer soloing which don't change basic structure but add lot of fashionable free jazz arrangements hardly possible in Miles music. Miles has been never interested in flirting with free jazz, and because of that Hino music for some ears sounds as "Miles undone next step brewing fusion and free jazz". I believe if Miles would be interested to make this step his music would sound much freer.
"Hi-Nology" stays one of the best early Japanese fusion album and start of commercial success for Terumasa Hino. Besides of few other country scene's similar releases it built the basis for plenteous and influential J-fusion movement some years later.
reviewed by Snobb
|Brand||Columbia / Sony Japan|
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