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Duk Project / 김병덕 / 상품명- Kim Byoung-Duk

Si Wan SRMKC 0002 Duk Project : The Old Is Funny

recorded 1992 releases LP 01 Jan 1994 CD 1992

A1 Old Is Funny 1:36

A2 Cissy Strut 3:48

A3 Am - G 6:54

A4 Come Together 5:20

B1 Make It Fun 5:24

* B2 Blues Theme From Neil Young 7:05

The best track of the album might be the Neil Young theme improvisation. It is worth investigating.

Drum, Percussion – Cheol Woo Park

Electric Bass – Jae You Kang

Electric Guitar – Kim Byoung Duk, Sang Ho Yoon

I have always been curious about this item, first of all because of its beautiful cover and being described as a Jazz-rock / Fusion project, that is not really so.

The first three tracks are like blues rock exercises with blues and funky elements: moody, and good enough but not too unusual. This improvised feeling with a bluesrock background continues in the next track, “Come together”, a stretched improvisation on the chords of the Beatles track with rhythm and electric guitar, more like a funky Rock & Blues improvisation, so sounding more like a not too wild James Brown backing band with rhythm guitar repetitions and with a lead guitar improvisation.

The next track, “Make It fun”, continues the mood. The band with bass and drums repeats a certain rhythmic foundation. The electric guitar improvises now with more effect and more hard blues-rockish emotionality, becoming more interesting and with peeping and vibrating notes.

The last and longest track improvises tastefully on one of Neil Young's songs from his highlighting electric guitar area on “Blues theme from Neil Young”. It is a very nice interpretation of what I think is “Down by the river”.

It is a short album of 30 minutes which builds up nicely and which is quickly over. It has its own charm.

Byoung Duk Kim very quickly had taken a distance from the general pop mainstream tendencies. He had studied musical composition at the Kyyeong Song university. His main instrument (after having started with trumpet earlier) remained the electric guitar.

He opened a Jazz Café, but this didn't get enough interest so he had to close it down. In his next experiment he tried to present what he called his experimental Tao Sound at a big music festival from the university.

He never managed to record this “spiritual sound”. It took until 1992 before he was able to establish his own studio, where he recorded this release and one other solo release with the help of some friends. Still it is one of the only albums of its kind from this period in South-Korea.

Looking back on the album and listening to it I must say I might have been blinded a bit by the beautiful cover. In a way this is blues jam improvisation that does not succeed to become very creative yet.

"Encountered by Alan Freeman :

progressive music from South Korea, of any kind, is a great rarity. Though, All things considered, what with the political and social climate there, and that they've only recently opened up to a market economy, that's not so surprising. Really, there's so little in the way of home-grown talent that I only know of one Korean progressive rock album(by one Shin Jung Hyun & Yup Juns)and that got banned! But what of other progressive forms like synth music or jazz-rock? Well, they seem to be even rarer commodities, despite a struggling underground trying to present Western style to Oriental years. The younger generation are however becoming curious, researching music from Europe during the past three decades. It seems that many young Koreans are developing an in satiable appetite for search music. Recently, to satisfy this demand some specialist "progressive"labels have been established : the label Si-Wan and Nices mostly concentrate on reissues, but are also now digging into their own culture, which seems as if it could be full of surprise! Byoung Duk Kim is a guitarist/multi-instrumentalist who's been on the Korean scene for twenty years or so, ever aiming to break down the social & musical prejudices that existed in Korea. In the 80's he ill-fatedly opened a jazz cafe, and has worked in almost every modem progressive genre imaginable from rock right through to Taoist meditation music. The opening of the market economy in South Korea meant that in 1992 Byoung Duk Kim was able to establish his own studio, and finally be able to present his music to the world. A historical moment for Korean new-music, Byoung's debut L.P is housed in an aptly unique cover, POT CONCERTO(SI-WAN SRMK 0001)comes in a sleeve shaped like a round clay pot (it's a fancy fold - out one too, and a bit fragile) and the care that has gone into the cover echoes the strange beauty of the music. This is a diverse collection of ethnic and fusion pieces , a step beyond his research into Taoism, most of track feature abstract soundscaping from oriental winds and percussives, then there are also moody ventures into jazz realms and the effect is that it could almost be a long lost Stomu Yamashita album. Fascinating, ethereal and the strange music of great invention, it's hard to guess what's going to come next!!!

In the sharp contrast to this is Byoung's jazz-rock band : Duk Project. Their debut L.P, strangely titled THE OLD IS FUNNY (Si-Wan SRMK 0002), is like going through a sonic time-warp, it's scarcely believable that it could be a 1994 recording the sound is flat, compressed and very live, it seems it's been intentionally been recorded badly to make it sound old! Really, this is quaint dated fusion late 60's American style, kinda Herbie mann type stuff, but instrumentally different. Playing lead guitar himself, Byoung is backed by three young musician on rhythm guitar, bass and drums, who are not really that proficient, though they amble through the motions adequately. As you may gather, I do had reservation about this, yet as what is possibly the first Korean jazz-rock album it's not a bad attempt. What I'd really like to see is a fusion of both aspects of the Byoung Duk Kim sound, a balanced meeting of East and West, that could be an even more rewarding experience. If this is just the start, the future of music from Korea could be promising."


70年代から営むレコードショップを通して吸収された古今東西の音楽に、異文化が交差する出身地釜山の港町特有の風土とタオの精神性を結びつけ、独自過ぎる霊性音楽を生み出した韓国の異能打楽器奏。その実験成果が刻まれている94年のレコード。大小様々な壺や水鉢といった手製の焼き物を打楽器に見立てて演奏しちゃう人ですが、ジャケもまさかの壺型。まずは、静々と打ち込まれる壺ビートに水音を交えた一曲『Pot Concerto』から。続いて、ミュージックコンクレートばりの濃密な響きの迷宮『Shaman Tree』。その仕事に光を当てた編集盤もリリースされるなど目下再評価中。家宝にどぞ。

Pot Concerto ‎(LP, Album, Gim)Si-Wan RecordsSRMK 0001South Korea1994

Pot Concerto ‎(CD, Album)Si-Wan RecordsSRMKC 001South Korea1999

Also released: ​Kim Byoung Duk - Experiment No.2 (1992, 대도 레코드사)

Experiment No. X Daehan Electronics DE001

"Growing up in the bustling port city of Busan and running his own record shop there from the late ‘70s, Kim Byoung Duk had a front-row seat to th​e finest in foreign record imports and a taste for the psychedelic that naturally evolved into spiritual, ambient and avant-garde sounds. His growing interest in Tao philosophy and the meditative music that accompanied it provided a fertile environment for his audio imagination. Unhampered by limited access to musical gear, he made use of a wide assortment of self-sourced pots of various sizes and curvature, cymbals, wooden sculpted flutes and percussion tools—each chosen for its unique harmonic vibration—to create an entirely new and unique body of work.

Experiment No. X retraces the oeuvre of Kim Byoung Duk, assembling tracks from Experiment No. 2, Pot Concerto and New Trilogy, illustrating a meditative journey from the freeness of the Tao sound, in the borders of ambient music and the avant-garde, to later groove-oriented jams which introduce rhythmic elements to the palate."

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