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A Navel City / No One Is There


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Audio CD, September 28, 2004

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Product Details

  • Audio CD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Allegro Corporation ***
  • ASIN: 5559460907
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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2 star
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 22 people found the following review helpful By yajdubuddah on September 28, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Navel city is a land of its own. Possibly due to the art album cover navel city is located in east asia with lush mountains plenty of eastern religious iconic figures and the statue of david. With a view of water and an industrial city landscape.
This is the first album ive heard from Hoppy Kamiyama (digital president, Slide Geisha, Ass hole box& gram pot and Kiyohiko Semba ( drums, Percussion and electronic drums) I hope we all know laswell ( Bass-effects)
the 1st song Azlo starts with a very ambient structure then melts to a slow jazz dub feel mainly drum and bass are present with sparatic digital ambient sounds and bells. Some light horn work is also present as the jam cuts in and out from style to style and different time signatures. Song clocks in 6:17
2nd song Todes fuge is a bite ambient with light percussion, piano and laswell style bass very badawi style with intense piano fills. 4:09
3rd song Sospirando is an up beat jazz dub with very strong digital sounds and lots of drum filtering/processing.
the 4th song The Desert is the second best song on the album, starts out with a very tribal feel, flutes, ambience and tribal drum set and percussion with dub bass. The song progressivelly changes styles including a very Herbie Hancock 70 fussion psychodelic style with lots of filter minipulation and frequence delays, incredible. Best jazz song ive heard in a long time. Cuts in and out of the jazzy and tribal very badawi style kinda last samurai eastern japaneese style. song is 13:52
5th song Zarathusta is very tribal with crickets and strange electronic sounds with what i think is the geisha which turns to a suttle jazz then to progressivelly more jam bandy 6:10
6th song Sad emission is by far the best song on the album and the longest.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Alexander Mills on February 17, 2008
Format: Audio CD
This is not your typical Bill Laswell venture, but it is one of the most unique productions he's been involved with, and arguably one of the best. Although there are distinct elements of free jazz present in several of the pieces, the majority of the album is tightly structured, with some of the most phenomenal drumming I've ever heard (courtesy of Kiyohiko Semba).

I feel that the term "defies categorization" is bandied about very loosely these days, but this album comes damn close to being worthy of it. Part jazz, part funk, part electronica; both none and all of these things at once. I'm probably making the music sound far more pretentious than it is, but it's genuinely difficult to assign genres to this record. There is an influence of Laswell's time working with Buckethead here (namely on Colma), but the music is far too influenced by jazz to be lumped in with it.

In essence, if you're a fan of Bill Laswell, Japanese jazz / electronica or the avant-garde, this is well worth your time. There should be some samples going on up above, so check it out for yourself. The cover art is quite reminiscent of Miles Davis' Bitches Brew, and as far as originality and creativity goes, A Navel City is certainly on par with it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By OM on April 30, 2014
Format: Audio CD
Rare work that deserves the title "genius". The rhythms and interplay occur and intertwine in a seemingly psychical group consciousness. Dub-jazz-electronic madness. This is the jazz of now.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Scott McFarland on May 27, 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Just aural trash ... I'm a big Laswell fan, but this is a project that didn't work at all. There's no there there, and the playing is irritating.
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