Boomkat Product Review:
The Lyrichord label offers an introductory overview of Japanese Noh theatre, a form of musical drama that's been in existence since the middle ages in Japan. The performance usually consists of a chorus and a hayashi ensemble made up by three drummers and a shinobue (a transverse flute) player. It's hard not to hear the music of Noh as being utterly discordant, because the combination of repeated chants and the seemingly entirely free-roaming melodies of the shinobue are incredibly challenging to the conventions underpinning Western approaches to harmony. As tends to be the case with compilations of this nature, it's always problematic trying to assess how representative of the artform the selected music is, but there's much to recommend this singularly weird musical experience.