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Top Customer Reviews
I think that ZEN is the outcome of him breaking the mold in the previous one. Krush is more mature now and he has made an exceptional album that will satisfy everyone. Hardcore hip hop funs, trip hop nodders, average mom and pap, in-love girls, trendy company CEOs, old time hippies, etc. It is the epitomy of a commercial album but without any of the negative conotations this definition might bring to mind. It incorporates soul, ambient, techno and industrial elements, mixed with the usual Japanese ultra minimalism, all together but also on their own. In Zen you can find maybe the most sentimental instrumental track in many years, a marriage between scattered guitar strings and saxophone, while the 3rd track is soulful trip hop at its best. Listen to the track no 7 and realise that Japanese raping can be as smooth as velvet, on a heavenly piano melody. Relax and enjoy, albums like this one dont come out too often.
The 5-star rating might be a little generous, but it's meant to reflect how worthy of purchase I think this CD is overall. I favor the more subdued, relaxing tunes. Some justifiably consider this release to be a bit inconsistent, but I also appreciate its diversity. Whatever you want to label this music - downtempo, acid jazz, hip hop - I don't think it fits easily into any particular category.
DJ Krush is especially effective at creating minimal soundscapes with subtle sophistication. Overall, this CD is laid-back and quite groove-worthy.
A few highlights (some impressions):
"Song 1" - very relaxing, kick-back hip-hop groove, very minimal with jazzy textures including a sweet trumpet.
"Zen Approach" - easy hip-hop funk beat with Black Thought from The Roots in full effect and shimmering background synths. Off the hook, baby!
"Danger of Love" - I'm a big Zap Mama fan and Marie Daulne (who IS Zap Mama) sings exquisitely on this smooth, catchy track. She also contributes some amazingly acrobatic vocals in the background, one of her most notable gifts.
"Sonic Traveler" - Starts off with background noises from a train station combined with subtle African rhythms and instruments before it launches off with a hyperkinetic drum machine. Actually employs bouncing ping pong balls as musical instruments - a fascinating instrumental!
"Vision of Art" - an ominous tone pervades over this spare track featuring an intense, ballsy rap performance.
"Day's End" - another very relaxing instrumental, similar to "Song 1" with a more "end-of-a-quiet-day" feel to it. Features more trumpet, a seductive acoustic guitar and that African instrument that I think is called a kora (?).Read more ›
D.J. Krush made a big risk with a miscellaneus of sounds (infact people could be disoriented by the changes from a track to another) but the final result is perfect.
It's not a Cd to play single track, one you put on you have to finish it, it's like a classic synphonia!
Only with all songs togheter you can undrstand the total CD.
You can love it, dosen't mind with kind of music you are coming from...for sure you will love it..it's so sweet, so dark, so trip, so smart,..........so ZEN
now that i've analyzed it, i'd like to put my stamp of approval on this work of art. the cd as a whole stands very well. it always impresses me when an artist can bridge smoothly between potentially different concepts. truly, another 5-star krush home run.
DJ Krush brings a spectrum of sound with his distinct mark hanging above like a moonlit night. Black Thought does a nice track (better than the Hardware track on his solo). The Zap Mama track is wonderful! Likewise, I really love the N'Dea Davenport and Kukoo Da tracks. There are countless gems on here, although it's the complete journey that captures Krush's genius.
Krush doesn't produce banging singles. He explores territory, and for those who have been following him, I highly suggest finding this LP as soon as you can... and putting it on repeat.
I rate it 4 stars, only because it takes a Kind of Blue to get 5.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Only heard one song prior to purchase it was not the rap songs on this cd. My mistake just not what I listen to.Published 12 months ago by Paul
ZEN starts DJ Krush off on the lovely, sedate note of "Song 1" with a flute hovering in the easy listening air, but to prove that he's not gone soft, he mixes a more raw rap with... Read morePublished on February 20, 2013 by scoundrel
This is indeed a sick album and one to have in the car at home at work like american express it is the loveliest check out the cover for god sake- money.Published on November 21, 2012 by PollyCreager
Sorry, but this is one of my least favorite DJ Krush albums. It feels like an unfocused, random pile of singles rather than a cohesive album. Read morePublished on January 9, 2007 by 4RillaGorilla
We have just spotted the duck with the rabbit ears, via satelite, we believe he is going to Bulgaria. Crawl, thats all the news for now. Gotta go and shave my neck. Read morePublished on June 16, 2005 by Graham Brown
Although DJ Krush's "Zen" is far ahead of its own time, there is a palpable sense of nostalgia and iconography within the confines of this amazing album. Read morePublished on March 27, 2005 by Daryl Frasch
This is one Krush's best albums. Though it's pretty difficult to say that when everyone of his albums has been a pretty solid release. Read morePublished on April 18, 2004 by mondo
Having immensely enjoyed 1999's largely instrumental "Kakusei" album, Dj Krush must have been listening when I was wondering what his music would sound like with vocal... Read morePublished on October 29, 2003 by fetish_2000
I am from San Diego and i love the music they call reggae. I don't usually listen to other music, but this cd by dj krush just has me freakin hooked. Read morePublished on May 7, 2002 by romolo