A mysterious sound aurora on the magical paths of the infinite universe of percussion, originally released in 1985 and then almost completley lost. Moon On The Water were a trio of percussionists based in Italy - David Searcy and Jonathan Scully, both American tympani players in the Scala Philarmonic Orchestra, with the legendary Italian jazz drummer Tiziano Tononi, who worked with everyone from Roberto Musci, to Muhal Richard Abrams, Pierre Favre (who later joined the group), Andrew Cyrille, Barre Phillips, and Steve Lacy. Drawing on a diversity of experience, joined collectively by a unified love of rhythm and sound, they assembled a percussion record of the highest order - an unclassifiable work which should be legendary, and leaves you confounded that it’s not.
Within the history of efforts dedicated to percussion, Moon On The Water’s debut stands apart. A singular work, made remarkable by the diversity and range of its sonorities and structures. The scope of its ambition is startling. Utilizing the full intellect, experience, and talent of its creators, it employs field recording against a stunning array of instrumentation - seemingly everything from which rhythm and resonant tone could be drawn. The result renders a remarkable effect. From the delicate pulse of nature, deep resonances and carefully placed tone, intricate structures and tempos as slow as they go, across its movements the album rewrites how composition for percussion should be understood, before giving way to consuming and ecstatic rhythms which reference the Brazilian tradition of Batucada, various trance and ritual traditions of Africa, and drum solos from Free Jazz and Rock. This is as good as percussion records get. A lost marvel - accessible while distinctly avant-garde. The throbbing pulse of creative joy, distilled onto two sides of wax.
Ecstatic elements of Japan ambient minimalism dialogue with contemporary music solutions (Varèse, Ligeti), in the stream of a harmonious fusion of ancient and modern. It’s a propitiatory ceremony of supernatural things that open portals of blissfulness, tribal and shamanic darkness, timeless jungles. Between amazon fires and African safaris, we float in the Asian rivers of meditation, lost in water games, echoes of caves and rocks in the night, synergies of frogs, birds, snakes, marimbas, chimes, gongs, and tubular woods.
The album also includes one of the sickest percussion jam we’ve heard from 1980’s Italy: the mystically-named In the Land of the Boo - Bam. Exploring a wide range of percussions, from mallet instruments to drums, the band tightly builds a hypnotic jam with a strong Mediterranean feeling, maybe partly provided by the «Tullio de Piscopo-esque» drumming pattern. As the song goes by, the vibe gets more and more shamanic, often changing directions before climaxing in an epic final. True uplifting trance music!