Wada, Yoshi: Singing in Unison 3LP
Singing in Unisonis the latest in a series of recordings from acclaimed sound artist, composer, and performer Yoshi Wada. Recorded live over two nights in 1978, on March 14th and 15th at New York City's legendary performance space The Kitchen, Singing in Unison is a dramatic yet meditative work: modal improvisations for three male voices, singing, with great gravitas, in purposeful unison. These previously-unreleased recordings, featuring vocalists Richard Hayman, Imani Smith, and Wada himself are extremely powerful, with a glacial majesty and a sense of timeless wonder. Wada's earliest musical memories are of hearing Zen Buddhist ritual chants in his native Japan, and those memories are reflected in the deep vocalizations here; also evident is Wada's period of intense study with Indian master singer Pandit Pran Nath. Thus there is a definite "eastern" feeling to Singing in Unison, with further elements added by Imani Smith's Sufi background and Wada's interest in eastern European vocal styles, but the music is also informed by Wada's experiences in the Fluxus movement and as a member of the New York avant-garde community. The edgy atmosphere of 1970s New York City pervades these recordings, adding a hint of menace. Despite the fact that this is purely vocal music, fans of the slow-moving heaviosity of Sunn 0))) will appreciate Singing in Unison.