Apr 2, 2010

"Yochu No Kiki" The Performance

The flyer of the event. The name Hikashu was already credited for music.

In summer 1978, Makigami Koichi was preparing a material for the underground theatrical performance called "Yochu No Kiki," which he was to produce and write a script. In it, he intended to sing some original songs with live ensemble, and asked his friend and a composer for underground theatre, Yamashita Yasushi, for making the music. Yamashita agreed.

For composing music, Yamashita asked Makigami lyrics or words to get inspired. So Makigami wrote some. One of them was titled "Yochu No Kiki". It was very short, only four lines. Another was "Puyo Puyo". After being supplied the words, Yamashita quickly wrote music for them.

Looking at the lyrics now, I cannot tell what it is. They are so obscure, very puzzling and highly strange. And Makigami did not explain the meaning. So we have to use our imagination for deciphering what they meant. What do you think with those words?

Yochu No Kiki [The Crisis of Larvae]
words by Makigami Koichi
music by Yamashita Yasushi

It's so fun, larvae are to die
It's so fun, insects are to die too

It's so fun, animals are to die
It's so fun, humans are to die too

Puyo Puyo
words by Makigami Koichi
music by Yamashita Yasushi

Puyo Puyo
Standing up like a sick patient
"Hey look, I am very sick"
Pyoko Pyoko
Standing up like a healthy being
"Hey look, I am so non-orgasmic"

Kuyo Kuyo
Standing up like a human being
"Hey look, I am such a fool"
Pao Pao
Standing up like a balloon
"Hey look, I am so satisfied"

In "Yochu No Kiki", and the monologues of "Puyo Puyo", Makigami used a small boyish way of wording. In the case of the latter, it sounds like a kind of self-mocking to me.

"Puyo Puyo", "Pyoko Pyoko", "Kuyo Kuyo" and "Pao Pao" are all adjective words or onomatopoeia in Japanese. It's hard to describe exactly what they are. Roughly speaking, it could be said that "Puyo Puyo" is meant something sloppy or flabby. "Pyoko Pyoko" is used for something bouncing or spurning the ground, like rabbit or a man whose one foot is in a plaster cast trying to move. "Kuyo Kuyo" is usually used for a person who is regretful or penitent. "Pao Pao" is used for describing sound of Elephant call. Some people think that the song "Puyo Puyo" is about an amorphous, slime-like creature who is sick and trying to stand up. I cannot tell it is right or wrong (probably), but an interesting interpretation, I think.

You might notice those tunes have an out of the ordinary song structure. That is because they are written for theatrical performance.

The performance was held on July 15-16, 1978 at Ekoda, Tokyo. Unexpectedly, the members found themselves being very amused for playing those songs on stage, and decided to form a band. After spending a month for rehearsals, the band made a stage appearance for the first time, as main act, at a free-jazz joint in Kichijoji, Tokyo. It was August 29th of 1978, and the beginning of its 30+ years existence.

This is said to be from one of the early rehearsals of Hikashu, playing "Yochu No Kiki". Makigami played a white, violin-shaped electric bass which he got from Yamashita.

Related Entry:
Hikashu - 1978 (1996)

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