Japanese Psych Masters Return To Bottom Of The Hill

By Dave Pehling

SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Dealing out mind-altering sounds for over two decades, Japanese experimental rock outfit Acid Mothers Temple brings its other worldly live show to the Bottom of the Hill in San Francisco Saturday night.

Guitarist Makoto Kawabata’s career dates back to his early days on the fringes of the Osaka music scene during the late ’70s when he first tried to bring together the heavy rock of Deep Purple with the electronic sounds of German composer Karlheinz Stockhausen. In the mid-1990s, he would form Acid Mothers Temple as a musical collective exploring cosmic sounds drawing from progressive rock, the propulsive krautrock of Can and Neu and avant-garde classical giants like Stockhausen, Terry Riley and Iannis Xenakis.

Initially, the group recorded their collective improvisation before Kawabata edited and overdubbed those tapes for a final result similar to the working process of Can or electric-era Miles Davis. The band self-released several cassettes and gradually built a cult following with their powerful live shows, touring the globe extensively. Along with underground outfits like Ghost, Boredoms and Kawabata’s noisy power trio side project Mainliner, Acid Mothers Temple became part of a vanguard of the Japanese neo-psychedelic rock movement.

With longtime synthesizer player Higashi Hiroshi (a member since 1998) at his side, Kawabata and company have made a name for themselves with a prolific output of live and studio recordings over the decades. Acid Mothers Temple has also managed a number of notable collaborations with their heroes, recording and performing onstage with members of UK prog greats Gong and iconic krautrock drummer and Guru Guru founder Mani Neumeier.

The current line-up of AMT — Kawabata and Hiroshi along with newer members Satoshima Nani  on drums, Mitsuko Tabata on guitar and Tsuyama Atsushi (aka Wolf) on bass — unleash their unique style of epic cosmic music at the Bottom of the Hill Saturday evening. They are joined by LA-based acid-rock group Babylon and San Francisco psych-folk band Dire Wolves. DJ Rob Metal plays psychedelic selections before and between bands.

Acid Mothers Temple
Saturday, May 13, 8:30 p.m. $12
Bottom of the Hill

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