Exposé Online banner

Various Artists — Lost Years in Labyrinth
(Belle Antique 9119, 1991, CD)

by Mike Ezzo, Published 1996-03-01

Lost Years in Labyrinth Cover art

This album was just what the doctor ordered back in 1991. Finally someone saw fit to start focusing on other styles besides the symphonic rock that the eighties were glutted with. Featured here are four bands, each unique, yet all embracing styles which could loosely be termed fusion, or chamber rock. At one end you have Zypressen, the most classical sounding of the bunch. Their orchestration focuses mostly on acoustic instruments like cello and glockenspiel, to conjure up a sound not dissimilar to what Univers Zero might do, albeit on a much brighter day. At the other end is Soft Weed Factor, who take the Ain Soph sound a little further towards the jazz end. Soft Machine fans ought to be interested here. Somewhere between the two is Lacrymosa, finally making a recorded appearance after a decade of inactivity. Led by bassist Chihiro Saito they play a powerful chamber-rock music descendent from Magma, but with a much richer sense of harmony; more dense and chromatic, with nice instrumental interludes spotlighting Saito's melodic bass, and pointillistic piano work from Marquee's own Naohiro Yamazaki. The fourth entry, Il Berlione, needs no introduction here. All three songs by them are from their pre-cd cassette release. And they are just as good.

A compilation like this was long overdue from Japan; I only wish they could have persuaded Zypressen to come up with a full album's worth of material. There is no one else like them in Japan. This compilation I highly recommend.


Filed under: New releases, Issue 9, 1991 releases

Related artist(s): Lacrymosa, Il Berlione, Various Artists, Zypressen

Latest news

2020-03-24
Bill Rieflin RIP – The sad news reaches us today of Bill Rieflin's death. Rieflin was best known as a drummer in bands ranging from post-punk to industrial to indie-rock to progressive rock, including work with The Blackouts, Ministry, Nine Inch Nails, Swans, Land, and King Crimson. Rieflin had been battling cancer for several years, and succumbed to it on March 24. He was 59. » Read more

2020-03-17
Cruise to the Edge and Seaprog 2020 Festivals Postponed – The worldwide outbreak of the novel coronavirus has started to produce casualties in the music world, and festivals are not immune. We've had word that both the Cruise to the Edge (originally slated for March 27 - April 1) and Seaprog (originally June 5-7) have been postponed to later dates, with those dates to be announced. » Read more

2020-03-06
McCoy Typer RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of one of the most influential pianists in the history of jazz, McCoy Tyner. His tenure with John Coltrane in the early 60s includes some of the most treasured recordings of the era, including My Favorite Things and A Love Supreme. After leaving Coltrane's group, he had a long and successful solo career. He was 81. » Read more

2020-02-18
Jon Christensen RIP – Word reaches us today of the passing of Norwegian drummer Jon Christensen, a musician whose sensitive playing did much to help define the atmospheric sound of ECM jazz recordings. His work with Jan Garbarek, Bobo Stenson, Terje Rypdal, and many more was sensitive and varied, adapting to a wide variety of styles while maintaining a distinct identity of its own. Christensen was 76. » Read more

2020-01-21
Gong Announces UK Tour for 2020 – Having spent the last few years touring the world, including dates in Japan with psych legend Steve Hillage, multiple headline European tours and festivals, America’s Cruise to the Edge festival, a South America headline tour, and a headline performance at Tomorrow Festival in China, the band have won the hearts of both traditional and modern Gong fanbases. During this live journey, Gong has delved further into the truly psychedelic, exploratory, and mind-expanding side of the music. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Niacin - Niacin & High Bias – The cover of the first Niacin shows the venerable Hammond B3, a creature of legend. So you get an idea what you are in for. Who is Niacin? I think this would be called a "pet project" where...  (1999) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues