DJ Krush's 6th Album (Krush, Strictly Turntablized, Meiso, Milight, Kakusei, Zen) is a slightly different affair from his other albums, borrowing styles and ideas from his other albums to create an album on contrasts which is simply superb. The opening track, Song 1 is perhaps my favourite track of all time, with it's laid back piano, chilled beats and clever samples making a true chillout track. the album includes the roots and other guest rappers and singers to add depth to Krush's beats. For those of you who haven't got a Krush album, then this is a good start, with tracks 1,7,9 and 12 providing and change from the rapping of tracks 2,6 and 11 and the quirkiness of track 5. A must have album ofr any disconcerting hip-hop, beats or chillout fan.
Dj Krush is, quite frankly, one of the most innovative mixmasters alive today. Zen is absolutely marvelous, filled with everything from soft acid jazz to trip hop and rap (and don't let the rap moniker keep you from buying this cd, it's not exactly gangsta). Listen to it at home, at work, in your car. It's mellow yet it moves, dancey and trancey, uncomparable to anything else, unless you were to mix three of his previous cd's together - Melight, Krush, and Ki-Oku. Just buy it already!
In a genre otherwise known as "Abstract" hip-hop, the music of "Zen" has more to do with Fusion-Jazz and psychedelia, than with formulaic Rap. This allows veteran Japanese DJ Krush to explore new territories without creative restraints, proving that Hip-hop is still an ongoing experiment, a global phenomenon with a 3 decade history. Where the needle scratches and the beat stomps through the woofers, the vocals of Zap Mama, N'Dea Davenport (Brand New Heavies) and Sunja Lee soar, while rappers Boss the MC and Black Thought (the Roots) apply rhythm, reason and rhyme. For all is trademark "Krush" sound, Zen manages to surprise and elevate a whole genre to new grounds.
This is a must have album for any music enthusiast. The hip-hop beats meld perfectly with the ambient overtones. It definitely has elements that recall '90s era hip-hop, however, it is a work of art that stands on its own and cannot be classified as just another hip-hop album from that decade.
Asian influences are clearly present in the ambient overlays (a tribute to DJ Krush's origins), creating a relaxing mood even though many of the songs are uptempo.
This is one of those great albums that is under appreciated by most but can't be over estimated. A great "under the radar" album that is sure to please a crowd if played a party or in a DJ set.
The opening track is one of the stand out tracks in the album. Definitely sets the tone for the rest of the album while creating a surrealistic feel as live applause is peppered in through the track.
Zen Approach is THE defining track of the album featuring Black Thought.
Danger Of Love is a chill vocal track. Nice groove but the melody/vocals seem a little boring to me personally. Vocalist calls to mind influences from Macy Gray.
Sonic Traveler and Duck Chase are both great instrumental tracks however my preference leans more towards the more experimental Duck Chase track.
Vision Of Art another vocal track with skilled rapping and a good back beat.
Day's End - Instrumental track that perfectly describes by it's title and lacks nothing in providing what it promises.
With Grace - marginal vocal track but still maintains great musical prowess with a strong back beat.
Candle Chant - As usual the beat is solid and the vocals, although in Japanese, display clear rapping skill.
Endless Railway -Good instrumental track with dark undertones and experimental elements.
What'z Da Solution - Heavy hip-hop beat and lyrics with a message.
Paradise Bird Theory - Very ambient track with some spoken female vocals. Asian influences are clearly present in the musical overtones.
Final Home - Probably the most mainstream sounding track. A thick beat and fast scratching make this vocal track irresistibly catchy.
Initially, i wasn't sure about this album, hey, i even considered returning it! But on a second listen, how wrong I was. From chillout to break beat to r'n'b.soul and even a bit of a rap. I think he should have done more chillout, as tracks 1,7 and 12 are his greatest songs. Maybe try before you buy, but some may not even need to, as it has something for everyone.
A magnificent album that encompasses a range of music genres to great effect. The melodic 'Song 1' is an impressive start and hiphop heavyweights from the Roots and Company Flow bolster the album further. 'With Grace' is a sultry tune that stands out and Krush's beats are equally superb on 'Candle Chant'
It is a warm and colorful CD where all the sounds and colors are mingled till you discover a multicutural CD. It is the richest CD I've never heard before. It opens your mind and you discover the world as never as before. You just feel peaceful.
Really attentive service with good follow up emails following postage of the item. The item arrived within the estimated dates provided and was not damaged at all despite the long journey from the US to the UK. Really pleased to have this album at such a good price considered its rarity.