Press Comments – USA

“Traditional rituals recast as theater, and contemporary thoughts about ancient instruments both figure in Kodo’s performance, which includes ancient and modern compositions. Yet with tense, angular postures, with stylized, frozen gestures and, in one playful piece, with animal-like scampering and slithering, Kodo reminds its audience that, above all, its music is a matter of flesh and blood, wood and stretched skin. Kodo can raise the roof, but the group can also show extraordinary finesse.”

The New York Times

“Having spent some time with them, jazz drummer and composer Max Roach thinks of the Japanese drummers of Kodo as regular guys. On stage it’s another story – clad in sweatbands and loincloths, they are like percussionist kamikazes. You expect them to drum till they drop. “The technique they use to play percussion instruments is totally different from anything I’ve ever seen” he says… They deal with that ‘visual sound’ more than anyone I’ve ever known.”

The Village Voice

“1995 …the 14 musicians created waves of percussive sound that seemed to turn Carnegie Hall itself into a resonant cavity covered with animal skin.”

The New York Times

“The concert was a celebration of organic patterns.”

The New York Times

“Indeed, if there is such a thing as perfection in music, Kodo comes as near to it as any group in the world.”

Boston Globe

“Superlatives don’t really exist to convey the primal power and bravura beauty of Kodo.”

Chicago Tribune

“Throughout, the devil of it is the combination of the discipline of a surgeon’s scalpel with the primitive, muscular endurance of a cavalry charge.The speed and dexterity are as impressive as the physical tenacity is breathtaking.”

Chicago Tribune

“Heart of the beat -Kodo goes as far back as the cave for its intoxicating pulses.”

Chicago Tribune

Press Comments – Europe

“Balancing a deadly aggression with utter tranquility, their sound stretches from the lightest of rainfall to cataclysmic thunderclaps, from pleasant laughter to discordant fear and from silence to – just once here – a wall of sound, as high, frightening and impregnable as a mountain. Musicians, theatre directors and all interested in the sheer power of sound to feed emotions should take note.”

The Guardian / UK

“The spectator is crushed by their power and then suddenly, silence. Complete silence as if life had stopped in an instant, no applause, not even a breath. I have never seen a show where the audience was so close to suffocating. Don’t miss this, the sound of their drums will be engraved forever on your memory.”

Le Quotidien de Paris / FRANCE

Dynamic, electrifying vision ….Nothing will prepare you for the 1,000 lb. drum assault, the precise timing or the wall of sound. An essential experience.”

Time Out / UK

“According to the programme notes for the Kodo drummer’s overwhelming performance at Sadler’s Wells Theatre, the massive 1000 lb. o-daiko drum has such a strong affinity with a mother’s heartbeat as heard by a baby in her womb that small children fall asleep to its thunderous sound. I can vouch for that. A little girl in the audience, who had been kicking up an unholy fuss during the more tranquil numbers, slept soundly throughout the shattering o-daiko improvisation. ….the volume of Kodo’s drumming, even at its most powerful, is never numbing or nauseating. There is a strain of peace that flows through the almost terrifying din, and the perfect control of these artists removes any sense of tension.”

The London Daily News / UK

“Excitingly varied, marvelously theatrical, fascinating from start to finish, with moments of vivid physical excitement, this programme by a small group of dancers and drummers, remaking performance arts into a modern theatrical experience, was a model of what can be done with folk art.”

The Sunday Telegraph / UK

“Het is daar dat Kodo de wereld treft. met zijin neo-traditionele visie dat we allen een zijin, bedoelt de groep ook dat lichaam en geest elkaar nodig hebben. Een Kodo-koncert ervaar je evenzeer als je het beschouwt…”

De Standaard / BELGIUM

“Der Festsaal der Basler Mutermesse vibrierte bis in den letzen Winkel. Was europäische Musikgruppen nur mit Hilfe von Tausenden von Kilowatt versuchen zu schaffen, gelingt der japanischen Gruppe auf ihren Trommeln mit Konzentration und barer Muskelkraft.”

─ Basellandschaftliche Zeitung / SWITZERLAND

“Musik, getrommelt, geblasen, geschlagen und getanzt, die ohne Umweg über den Kopf direkt in den Bauch. ins Zwerchfell, in die Blutbahnen, die Glieder und – in die Seele dringt.”

─ Tages-Anzeiger / SWITZERLAND

“The Kodo Thrill -The streets of Athens vibrated to the beat of the Kodo drums last night…”

Athens News / GREECE