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Blues Creation — Demon & Eleven Children (1971)

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Blues Creation — Demon & Eleven Children (1971)

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01. Atomic Bombs Away — 5:29
02. Mississippi Mountain Blues — 4:05
03. Just I Was Born — 6:16
04. Sorrow — 7:28
05. One Summer Day — 2:23
06. Brain Buster — 2:01
07. Sooner Or Later — 5:12
08. Demon & Eleven Children — 9:16

Hiromi Ohsawa — vocals
Kazuo Takeda — guitar, vocals
Masashi Saeki — bass
Masayuki Higuchi — drums

 

Blues Creation MKII (essentially founding guitarist Kazuo Takeda and three fresh-faced handpicked cohorts) made their recorded debut via 1971's enigmatically named Demon & Eleven Children, which was released in 1971 amidst an onslaught of then unsuccessful but now legendary albums documenting Japan's eccentric music scene of the period. Yet, ironically, Blues Creation's very competence at replicating the Brit blues boom's proto-metal aftermath wound up rendering this, the group's signature effort, both less exotic than, say, the Flower Travellin' Band's Satori, and certainly less radical than Speed, Glue & Shinki's garage-raw classic Eve -- to cite but two of that generation's most notorious sonic landmarks. In every other respect, though, Demon & Eleven Children is a formidable document of its ilk by any measure -- Japanese or global -- as it harnessed Takeda's previous international experience and recent Black Sabbath fascination into a monumentally wasted musical death-in. There, among the album's awesomely grinding, groaning dinosaur stomps one finds the acid-trip apocalypse of "Atomic Bombs Away," the incendiary full-band catharsis of "Just I Was Born," and the endless sequence of Godzilla-esque power chords and elephantine feedback of the epic title track. However, nestled among these, there is also the relative variety provided by token blues-rocker "Mississippi Mountain Blues" (clearly inspired by Flower Travellin' Band's own "Louisiana Blues," released the previous year), the extended jazz and blues improvisations of the mostly mellower "Sorrow" (something of a bridge between Sabbath and Budgie!), and the lysergic dreamscape of "One Summer Day." Still, there's no doubt that Blues Creation's existence and appeal relied almost entirely on Takeda, who further flexes his muscles (or fingers, as it were) across the energetic "Sooner or Later" and his personal showcase "Brane Baster," overall coming off like a more technically gifted Tony Iommi (even though he admittedly copped many of the man's riffs and licks). In short, it's safe to assume that only geographical isolation stopped Demon & Eleven Children from turning Blues Creation into a major concern overseas on par with, if not Zeppelin, Purple, or Sabbath, then possibly Leaf Hound, Buffalo, or Cactus. ---Eduardo Rivadavia, Rovi

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