Soil and "Pimp" Sessions Planet Pimp Review

Album. Released 2008.  

BBC Review

While constantly dynamic, Planet Pimp never runs away with itself.

Gemma Padley 2008

To feel the full force of Soil & Pimp "Sessions" you really need to be at the foot of a stage, not plugged into an iPod. After all, the Japanese alt. jazz collective have built their name around a reputation for fast, frenetic live shows. While not a patch on the live experience, S&P "S"' fourth album captures much of this ferocious, feverish energy.

The six-piece, who burst onto the DJ-driven Tokyo club scene in 2001, have perfected their unique sound through countless live performances. Having toured with the likes of Berlin based 'nu-jazz' collective Jazzanova and been championed by music guru Gilles Peterson (whose Brownswood label they are now signed to), S&P "S" have secured their place as pioneers of experimental alt. jazz.

If 2007's Pimpoint album constituted breathless, technically sharp compositions, album number four takes the group's self styled abrasive approach a step further. The incongruously named Hollow is a dense aural onslaught. Like a crazed dog on acid, the track dips and dives through cacophonous guitar fragments and swaggering psychedelic tones before eventually settling on a triumphant trumpet leitmotif. Storm is equally rambunctious with blazing brass and wriggling, heavily ornamented phrasing, while Go Next! scores top marks for sheer audaciousness.

Despite their kamikaze ad-hoc tendencies, S&P "S" never allow serrated-edged riffs and boisterous rhythms to get in the way of a good melody. The World Is Filled By – as instantly memorable as Pimpoint standout track A.I.E – ranks high on the catchiness scale. With knee-quiveringly good harmonies it is surely a contender for single release. The heady mix of entwined samba rhythms and killer keyboard on Sea Of Tranquility is equally irresistible.

While constantly dynamic, Planet Pimp never runs away with itself. Most importantly, its creators steer clear of ostentation. Dizzyingly satisfying, if at times physically exhausting to listen to, Planet Pimp offers unbridled excitement at every turn. On second thoughts, perhaps the listening experience is as good after all.

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