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UNKNOWN ME - Bishintai (CS+DL)UNKNOWN ME - Bishintai (CS+DL)
UNKNOWN ME - Bishintai (CS+DL)Not Not Fun Records
¥1,779

The inaugural LP by Tokyo Metropolis electronica entity UNKNOWN ME, Bishintai, is a sublime synthetic suite of cosmic wellness transmissions exploring “the unknown beauty of your mind and body,” appropriately named for a kanji compound meaning “beauty, mind, body.” Crafted with software, synthesizer, steel drum, rhythm boxes, and robotic voice by the core quartet of Yakenohara, P-RUFF, H. Takahashi, and Osawa Yudai, the album unfolds like a holographic guided meditation, soothing but cybernetic, framed by subways and sky malls. Latticework electronics flicker with texture, glitch, wobble, and mirage, themed around sensory perception and body parts. A diverse cast of collaborators assist in actualizing the collection's uniquely urban expression of new age ambient, from psychedelic footwork riddler foodman to multi-instrumentalist institution Jim O'Rourke to Japanese underground shape-shifters MC.Sirafu and Lisa Nakagawa. Although the group cites a therapeutic muse (“made for the maintenance of the minds of city dwellers”), Bishintai shimmers with an alien strangeness, too, like decentralized relaxation systems obeying sentient circuits. This is music of utopia and nowhere, channeling worlds within worlds, birthed from a sonic ethos as simple as it is sacred: “in pursuit of beautiful tones.”

Droopy Eye - Embruja (CS+DL)Droopy Eye - Embruja (CS+DL)
Droopy Eye - Embruja (CS+DL)Leaving Records
¥1,524
All Genre artist & beatmaker in anonymity Droopy Eye debuts the full-length album Embruja. After nearly a decade of exchanging genre-fluid demos and audio email attachments with Leaving Records founderperson Matthewdavid, Embruja surfaces as the perfect anomaly with playfully aligned experimental sonic & philosophical influences that include Terence McKenna x Underground UK Dance Music Culture, and The LA Beat Scene.
Nico Georis - Desert Mirror (CS+DL)Nico Georis - Desert Mirror (CS+DL)
Nico Georis - Desert Mirror (CS+DL)Leaving Records
¥1,954
- Californian pianist and composer Nico Georis presents the celestial piano music of Desert Mirror in preparation for a full-length album later in 2022. Currently inhabiting around Death Valley, Big Sur, Ojai, and LA, Nico's experiments persist with performances and recordings via the Noon at 2pm duo w/guitar pal Matt Baldwin, and his various plant music projects with PlantWave electrode hardware. - The majority of Desert Mirror was recorded in a small town outside of Death Valley on an upright piano in an abandoned airstream / work-in-progress studio. Use of hard-panned "mirror delay" - the same technique used by the influential composer Terry Riley on his album A Rainbow In Curved Air - was quintessential to the creation process of these "survival piano jams".
ST AGNIS - ॐ मणि पद्मे हूँ (CS+DL)ST AGNIS - ॐ मणि पद्मे हूँ (CS+DL)
ST AGNIS - ॐ मणि पद्मे हूँ (CS+DL)5 Gate Temple
¥2,378
"may vast blessings of peace seek you. x many thanks to wildflower, santi, and villi" all music production and vocals - victoria m. 'what a joy' mastered by brandenburg mastering <3

N Kramer - Altered Scenes and Slight Variations (CS+DL)N Kramer - Altered Scenes and Slight Variations (CS+DL)
N Kramer - Altered Scenes and Slight Variations (CS+DL)Leaving Records
¥1,524
*Berlin-based ambient artist N Kramer is releasing his new album Altered Scenes and Slight Variations on May 17 via Leaving Records. *Created over 2020-2022 as a variation on themes Niklas revisited over time with playful adjustment, Altered Scenes is the result of curiosity for complex harmony and composition techniques pursued via searching Youtube for tutorials on music theory. *Inspirations were drawn from a variety of sources such as the mixing of Studio Ghibli chord progressions with Jon Hassell soundscapes. We can also hear the retain of acousmatic percussive/harmonic processes & performance established on 2021's Habitat w/Berlin percussionist J Foerster. *Compiling a series of scenes (or tracks) soundtracking an imaginary film in episodic fashion, these scenes feature various musical motives used in alternating contexts. *Presented with a scene sequence, the listener is invited to experience the album as an “Opening” scene, continuing through a “Soft Lit Room”, “Wading Through The Grass” in the next moment, and so on. *Altered Scenes reconciles opposites amidst ASMR backgrounds: serendipitous or random vs. designed or composed, static vs. the free-flowing, sparse & quiet vs. dense & pulsating.
TWOTH - PLAYBACK THE COMPACT (CS+DL)TWOTH - PLAYBACK THE COMPACT (CS+DL)
TWOTH - PLAYBACK THE COMPACT (CS+DL)Music and Public Good Nature.
¥2,000
His musical career began with his debut on the prestigious Powershovel Audio, which is known for its numerous masterminds including Directorsound, Asuna, Kath Bloom, Killer Bong, Xiu Xiu, Zs, and many others. He has not only composed music for award-winning films at numerous international animation and film festivals, including "Otoppe" and "MODERN No.2," but has also worked as sound director for the National Art Center, Tokyo and ISSEY MIYAKE installation events, as well as for SONY "toio" and SHISEIDO "EFFECTIM," among others. He has also been involved in a wide range of activities, including sound design/production/composition for SONY's "toio" and Shiseido's "effectim. He is a Tokyo-based musician and sound designer with a musical background ranging from sampling music, electronic music, beat music, hip-hop, and breakbeats to Ethiopian music, ethnic music, spiritual jazz, and the latest ambient music. Twoth's latest album "PLAYBACK THE COMPACT" will be released on cassette in a limited edition. His music has been featured on compilations by Wire Magazine and Fogpak, and he is also a featured artist on Roy Tamaki x Low High Who's "Fighting! This is TWOTH's first new album in two years, following his Idly Chip Records masterpiece "MIMIC BEATS" released in 2020. The album is remixed by Meitei, a Japanese composer of ambient/electronic music of the new era who seeks "lost Japanese atmosphere," and by BERVATRA, a unit consisting of Shinichi Suda himself and filmmaker Kosaku Shimamoto. BERVATRA, and artwork by Junpei Fujita. The album was mastered by Taylor Deupree, a veteran of the prestigious New York-based electroacoustic/ambient label "12k". The album opens with the post-classical/ambient drone "When unwrapping things," a ray of light shining through a frozen landscape reminiscent of the rugged nature of Northern Europe. Transformable pieces", which intersects layers of melancholic synths and heavy beats in a dignified atmosphere tinged with nostalgia that evokes the visions of electronica of the zero's. The minimalism of June Chikuma's electronic music and Midori Takada's Mkwaju The majestic soundscape of "Joy and wonder" is an electronica/ambient pop piece that seems to blend the minimalism of June Chikuma's electronic music with the vast childhood memories of Midori Takada's Mkwaju Ensemble, and the grandiose soundscape of the original piece with the Japanese and oriental view of nature and life that only Meitei could create. When unwrapping things (Meitei Remix)" is a solemn soundscape that incorporates Meitei's unique view of Japanese and oriental nature and life into the magnificent soundscape of the original song. This is a piece filled with a sense of openness, where even the sick minds of post-Corona people who have experienced the once uninhabited urban landscape are returned to their childhood, as fragments and memories of imaginary everyday life soar through the air. Tsunaki Kadowaki / Meditations
Mort Garson - Mother Earth's Plantasia (CS)
Mort Garson - Mother Earth's Plantasia (CS)Sacred Bones Records
¥1,798

In the mid-1970s, a force of nature swept across the continental United States, cutting across all strata of race and class, rooting in our minds, our homes, our culture. It wasn’t The Exorcist, Goodbye Yellow Brick Road, or even bell-bottoms, but instead a book called The Secret Life of Plants. The work of occultist/former OSS agent Peter Tompkins and former CIA agent/dowsing enthusiast Christopher Bird, the books shot up the bestseller charts and spread like kudzu across the landscape, becoming a phenomenon. Seemingly overnight, the indoor plant business was in full bloom and photosynthetic eukaryotes of every genus were hanging off walls, lording over bookshelves, and basking on sunny window ledges. The science behind Secret Life was specious: plants can hear our prayers, they’re lie detectors, they’re telepathic, able to predict natural disasters and receive signals from distant galaxies. But that didn’t stop millions from buying and nurturing their new plants.

Perhaps the craziest claim of the book was that plants also dug music. And whether you purchased a snake plant, asparagus fern, peace lily, or what have you from Mother Earth on Melrose Avenue in Los Angeles (or bought a Simmons mattress from Sears), you also took home Plantasia, an album recorded especially for them. Subtitled “warm earth music for plants…and the people that love them,” it was full of bucolic, charming, stoner-friendly, decidedly unscientific tunes enacted on the new-fangled device called the Moog. Plants date back from the dawn of time, but apparently they loved the Moog, never mind that the synthesizer had been on the market for just a few years. Most of all, the plants loved the ditties made by composer Mort Garson.

Few characters in early electronic music can be both fearless pioneers and cheesy trend-chasers, but Garson embraced both extremes, and has been unheralded as a result. When one writer rhetorically asked: “How was Garson’s music so ubiquitous while the man remained so under the radar?” the answer was simple. Well before Brian Eno did it, Garson was making discreet music, both the man and his music as inconspicuous as a Chlorophytum comosum. Julliard-educated and active as a session player in the post-war era, Garson wrote lounge hits, scored plush arrangements for Doris Day, and garlanded weeping countrypolitan strings around Glen Campbell’s “By the Time I Get to Phoenix.” He could render the Beatles and Simon & Garfunkel alike into easy listening and also dreamed up his own ditties. “An idear” as Garson himself would drawl it out. “I live with it, I walk it, I sing it.”

But as his daughter Day Darmet recalls: “When my dad found the synthesizer, he realized he didn’t want to do pop music anymore.” Garson encountered Robert Moog and his new device at the Audio Engineering Society’s West Coast convention in 1967 and immediately began tinkering with the device. With the Moog, those idears could be transformed. “He constantly had a song he was humming,” Darmet says. “At the table he was constantly tapping.” Which is to say that Mort pulled his melodies out of thin air, just like any household plant would.
The Plantae kingdom grew to its height by 1976, from DC Comics’ mossy superhero Swamp Thing to Stevie Wonder’s own herbal meditation, Journey Through the Secret Life of Plants. Nefarious manifestations of human-plant interaction also abounded, be it the grotesque pods in Invasion of the Body Snatchers or the pothead paranoia of the US Government spraying Mexican marijuana fields with the herbicide paraquat (which led to the rise in homegrown pot by the 1980s). And then there’s the warm, leafy embrace of Plantasia itself.

“My mom had a lot of plants,” Darmet says. “She didn’t believe in organized religion, she believed the earth was the best thing in the whole world. Whatever created us was incredible.” And she also knew when her husband had a good song, shouting from another room when she heard him humming a good idear. Novel as it might seem, Plantasia is simply full of good tunes.

Garson may have given the album away to new plant and bed owners, but a decade later a new generation could hear his music in another surreptitious way. Millions of kids bought The Legend of Zelda for their Nintendo Entertainment System back in 1986 and one distinct 8-bit tune bears more than a passing resemblance to album highlight “Concerto for Philodendron and Pothos.” Garson was never properly credited for it, but he nevertheless subliminally slipped into a new generations’ head, helping kids and plants alike grow.

Hearing Plantasia in the 21st century, it seems less an ode to our photosynthesizing friends by Garson and more an homage to his wife, the one with the green thumb that made everything flower around him. “My dad would be totally pleased to know that people are really interested in this music that had no popularity at the time,” Darmet says of Plantasia’s new renaissance. “He would be fascinated by the fact that people are finally understanding and appreciating this part of his musical career that he got no admiration for back then.” Garson seems to be everywhere again, even if he’s not really noticed, just like a houseplant.

-Andy Beta 

Duster - Together (CS)Duster - Together (CS)
Duster - Together (CS)Numero
¥1,873
Gather your loved ones, Together is here. Duster’s fourth album is a 13-song exploration of comfortable, interplanetary goth. A sonic vaseline of submerged guitars, solder-burned synths, and over-driven rhythm tracks. “I know people say, ‘Oh Duster music so sad, we've even said it ourselves before,” Clay Parton said. “But it's a lot more like absurdism than nihilism.”
KENTATAKU YUTATAKU - Zero On (CS+DL)KENTATAKU YUTATAKU - Zero On (CS+DL)
KENTATAKU YUTATAKU - Zero On (CS+DL)0on
¥1,500

0on Zero-on, a label run by the percussion group "Kodo 鼓童" which has its roots on Sado Island, has released a cassette recording of a solo performance by percussionist Yuta Sumiyoshi, a member of the "Kodo" group. 

KENTATAKU YUTATAKU’s 3rd album “Zero On” is the eponymous first release on Kodo’s new label 0on.
Featuring four improvisational tracks, ranging from large ensemble works without musical instruments to vast sound collages, KENTATAKU YUTATAKU’s latest work is packed full of heart, soul, and fresh new sound.
Limited release of 200 cassettes + download code. 

Yuta Sumiyoshi - Mogari (CS+DL)Yuta Sumiyoshi - Mogari (CS+DL)
Yuta Sumiyoshi - Mogari (CS+DL)0on
¥1,500

0on Zero-on, a label run by the percussion group "Kodo 鼓童" which has its roots on Sado Island, has released a cassette recording of a solo performance by percussionist Yuta Sumiyoshi, a member of the "Kodo" group. 

“Mogari” is Yuta Sumiyoshi’s debut solo album. Features six tracks of 100% shinobue (bamboo flutes) music, recorded entirely at his home studio. This uncharted exploration of shinobue sound drifts and shapeshifts through drone, noise, minimalism and more, leading to untold possibilities. Limited release of 100 cassettes + download code.

V.A. - Pause for the Cause: London Rave Adverts 1991-1996, Vol. 2 (CS)V.A. - Pause for the Cause: London Rave Adverts 1991-1996, Vol. 2 (CS)
V.A. - Pause for the Cause: London Rave Adverts 1991-1996, Vol. 2 (CS)Death Is Not The End
¥1,998
Back in the early ‘90s, whenever the pirate radio MC announced “a pause for the cause”, I usually pressed pause on my cassette recorder. That’s something I would regret years later, when ad breaks had become cherished mementos of the hardcore rave era. Luckily, back in the day I often left the tape running while I went off to do something else. So a fair number of ad breaks got captured accidentally for my later delectation. Not nearly enough, though. So in recent years I started combing through the immense number of pirate radio sets archived on the internet. Sometimes the tracklists would note “ad break” or “ads”, helping to narrow the search. But often I’d just stumble on a bunch in the middle of a pirate show preserved on YouTube or an oldskool blog. A few of my original unintended “saves” and latterday “finds” are included in this wonderful collection by audio archaeologist Luke Owen. It’s the latest in his series of compilations of UK pirate radio advertisements, with this volume focusing on the audio equivalent of the rave flyer: MCs breathlessly hyping a club night or upcoming rave, listing the lineup of deejays and MCs, boasting about hi-tech attractions like lasers and projections, mentioning prices and nearest landmarks to the venue, and occasionally promising “clean toilets” and “tight but polite security” (“sensible security” is another variation). Some of these ads are etched into my brain as lividly as the classic hardcore and jungle tunes of that time. (Most rave ads incorporate snippets of current music, of course – big anthems and obscure “mystery tracks” alike). Names of deejays ring out like mythological figures: who were Shaggy & Breeze, Kieran the Herbalist, Tinrib, Food Junkie? Putting on my serious hat for a moment, I think these ads are valuable deposits of sociocultural data, capturing the hustling energy of an underground micro-economy in which promoters, deejays and MCs competed for a larger slice of the dancing audience. But mostly, they are hard hits of pure nostalgic pleasure, amusing and thrilling through their blend of period charm, endearing amateurism, and contagiously manic excitement about rave music’s forward-surge into an unknown future. The best of these ads give me a memory-rush to rival the top tunes and MC routines of the era. — Simon Reynolds, author of Energy Flash: A Journey Through Rave Music and Dance Culture.
V.A. - Pause for the Cause: London Rave Adverts 1991-1996, Vol. 1 (CS)V.A. - Pause for the Cause: London Rave Adverts 1991-1996, Vol. 1 (CS)
V.A. - Pause for the Cause: London Rave Adverts 1991-1996, Vol. 1 (CS)Death Is Not The End
¥1,998
Back in the early ‘90s, whenever the pirate radio MC announced “a pause for the cause”, I usually pressed pause on my cassette recorder. That’s something I would regret years later, when ad breaks had become cherished mementos of the hardcore rave era. Luckily, back in the day I often left the tape running while I went off to do something else. So a fair number of ad breaks got captured accidentally for my later delectation. Not nearly enough, though. So in recent years I started combing through the immense number of pirate radio sets archived on the internet. Sometimes the tracklists would note “ad break” or “ads”, helping to narrow the search. But often I’d just stumble on a bunch in the middle of a pirate show preserved on YouTube or an oldskool blog. A few of my original unintended “saves” and latterday “finds” are included in this wonderful collection by audio archaeologist Luke Owen. It’s the latest in his series of compilations of UK pirate radio advertisements, with this volume focusing on the audio equivalent of the rave flyer: MCs breathlessly hyping a club night or upcoming rave, listing the lineup of deejays and MCs, boasting about hi-tech attractions like lasers and projections, mentioning prices and nearest landmarks to the venue, and occasionally promising “clean toilets” and “tight but polite security” (“sensible security” is another variation). Some of these ads are etched into my brain as lividly as the classic hardcore and jungle tunes of that time. (Most rave ads incorporate snippets of current music, of course – big anthems and obscure “mystery tracks” alike). Names of deejays ring out like mythological figures: who were Shaggy & Breeze, Kieran the Herbalist, Tinrib, Food Junkie? Putting on my serious hat for a moment, I think these ads are valuable deposits of sociocultural data, capturing the hustling energy of an underground micro-economy in which promoters, deejays and MCs competed for a larger slice of the dancing audience. But mostly, they are hard hits of pure nostalgic pleasure, amusing and thrilling through their blend of period charm, endearing amateurism, and contagiously manic excitement about rave music’s forward-surge into an unknown future. The best of these ads give me a memory-rush to rival the top tunes and MC routines of the era. — Simon Reynolds, author of Energy Flash: A Journey Through Rave Music and Dance Culture.
Area 3 - Area 3 (CS+DL)Area 3 - Area 3 (CS+DL)
Area 3 - Area 3 (CS+DL)Khotin Industries
¥1,954
originally released on Khotin Industries in 2020. It soaks you, it puts you to sleep, it opens you up. A daydream ambient masterpiece. The debut cassette from Area 3, another name for Vancouver's popular producer Khotin, who has been the main force behind the cool house that has emerged out of Canada with Mood Hut at the top of the list. The worldview of this cassette is one of bottomless beauty, spiritual vibrancy, and profundity that cannot be described in words! The lo-fi feel and naturalistic charm of the sound world are retained, but further updated with an exquisite sense of sanctuary and hippocampal ambient. Mastered by Nik Kozub, who has also worked with Project Pablo, Jex Opolis, and others around Khotin.
Area 3 - Amb (CS+DL)Area 3 - Amb (CS+DL)
Area 3 - Amb (CS+DL)Khotin Industries
¥2,154
originally released on Khotin Industries in 2021. It soaks you, it puts you to sleep, it opens you up. A daydream ambient masterpiece. The debut cassette from Area 3, another name for Vancouver's popular producer Khotin, who has been the main force behind the cool house that has emerged out of Canada with Mood Hut at the top of the list. The worldview of this cassette is one of bottomless beauty, spiritual vibrancy, and profundity that cannot be described in words! The lo-fi feel and naturalistic charm of the sound world are retained, but further updated with an exquisite sense of sanctuary and hippocampal ambient. Mastered by Nik Kozub, who has also worked with Project Pablo, Jex Opolis, and others around Khotin.
Merzbow - Peace For Animals (CS+DL)Merzbow - Peace For Animals (CS+DL)
Merzbow - Peace For Animals (CS+DL)I Shall Sing Until My Land Is Free
¥1,867

Red/White two-color body cassette.
Limited edition of 200 copies.
All profits from this release will be donated to Ukrainian volunteer groups UAnimals and Save Pets Of Ukraine.

 

Interstellar Funk - Live at Muziekgebouw (CS+DL)Interstellar Funk - Live at Muziekgebouw (CS+DL)
Interstellar Funk - Live at Muziekgebouw (CS+DL)Artificial Dance
¥2,181
Artificial Dance founder Interstellar Funk releases Live At The Rest Is Noise - Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ. Limited to 150 cassettes, the recording documents Interstellar Funk’s performance at Amsterdam’s Muziekgebouw concert hall in October 2021. The 45-minute set ebbs and pulses, leaving behind Interstellar Funk’s penchant for hard-wearing club sounds in favour of melody and texture. Some passages mirror elements from the studio album Into The Echo (Dekmantel, 2022), but the live setting allows Interstellar Funk to expand and explore richly detailed sonic spaces that highlight his skills as a composer-performer. Download card included.
Omni Gardens & Zen Monk Jogen - New Directions in Meditation Tonalities (CS+DL)Omni Gardens & Zen Monk Jogen - New Directions in Meditation Tonalities (CS+DL)
Omni Gardens & Zen Monk Jogen - New Directions in Meditation Tonalities (CS+DL)Crash Symbols
¥1,997
I can soak. The 2020 ambient masterpiece "Moss King" for plants, which has also been made into LP & CD, is the latest collaborative album by Omni Gardens and Jogen Salzberg, which is familiar with our store, and released as a cassette from . A gem of work in which meditative and natural beauty-filled new age/ambient sounds are loosely connected on top of Salzberg's soft poetry. Definitely recommended for those who like Iasos and Laraaji! Limited to 300 copies.
Karate - The Bed Is In the Ocean (CS)
Karate - The Bed Is In the Ocean (CS)Numero
¥1,633
A lingering guitar note. A cushion of a bassline nudging along a hushed cadence unspooling impressionistic poeticism one halting line at a time; the sparse snap of a snare providing punctuation. This is how Boston’s Karate opened their third full-length, 1998’s The Bed Is In The Ocean. Perhaps this was a reaction to the aggressive punk tones that marked their previous album, or maybe they hoped to capture the somnambulant dusk on one of those pristine fall days that make living in a town whose population swells when colleges welcome back students all worthwhile. Then again, Karate never made a point of chasing the same idea twice, and “There Are Ghosts” remains in line with the band’s stylistic intrepidness and unpredictability. Even the group’s lineup appeared constantly in flux. After expanding from a trio to a quartet and employing a dual-guitar attack with 1997’s In Place of Real Insight, founding member Eamonn Vitt hung up his axe to attend medical school. Karate soldiered on as a trio, with mid-stream addition Jeff Goddard’s bass work helping establish a sidewinding path forward through the smoky jazz melodicism and sun-beaten blues brushstrokes that hung in the background of the band’s catalog. In their short time together, Karate helped bolster the national punk ecosystem, a scene in which individual artistic vision was prized but rarely achieved. Their exacting precision and emotive interplay helped recombine the DNA of the dignified grace of slowcore, the hot-and-sweaty atmospherics of the blues, and the high-wire tension of post-hardcore to deliver drawling instrumental curveballs and a furtive riptide climax with a controlled grace on “Outside Is The Drama.” Singer-guitarist Geoff Farina frequently teased out the emotional nuances of each song, his worn-in voice shading in the complexities of his enigmatic lyrics; no matter how difficult it may be to parse his snatched-from-daily-life wisdoms, on The Bed Is In The Ocean Farina sounded like a guy who knew exactly the right thing to tell whoever may be listening. And with Karate’s snaking turns through quasi-punk reveries no one else appeared capable of mustering, it’s comforting to hear it accomplished by a band that knew exactly what they were doing.
Hailu Mergia And The Walias Band - Tezeta (CS)
Hailu Mergia And The Walias Band - Tezeta (CS)Awesome Tapes From Africa
¥1,368

Hardly anyone outside Ethiopia seems to know Hailu Mergia & The Walias Band “Tezeta” exists. Within Ethiopia this tape has been impossible to find for decades. That’s about to change with this release, which makes available this epochal recording on LP, CD and Digital formats for the first time. From their genesis as members of the Venus club in-house band in the early 70s, Hailu Mergia and the Walias Band were at the forefront of the musical revolution during an era where modern instruments and foreign styles superseded the traditional fare to become the staple sound of Ethiopia. No one would argue that the Walias were the trailblazing powerhouse of modern Ethiopian music. They were the first band to form independently without affiliation to a theatre house, a club or a hotel; unprecedented and risky as they had to raise all funding for expenses by themselves including buying equipment. They were the first to release full instrumental albums, considered to be commercially unviable at the time. They opened their own recording studio, with band members Melake Gebre and Mahmoud Aman doubling as technical buffs during sessions. They were also the first independent band to tour abroad. In short, they were the pioneers every band tried to emulate; some more successfully than others. Odds are, any Ethiopian over the age of 35 who had access to TV or radio by the early 90s, will instantly recognize the sound of Walias. What is not a given is, how many would actually identify the band itself. Barely a day went by without hearing the Walias either in the background on radio or as an accompaniment to various programs on TV. This Tezeta album is the band’s second recording, released in 1975. Sourced by Awesome Tapes From Africa and expertly remastered by Jessica Thompson, its unique and funky renditions of standards and popular songs of the day are so quintessentially Walias, flavorful and evocative. Hailu’s melodic organ, unashamedly front and center in every track, makes even the complex pieces accessible. Profoundly engaging; it’s an immersive trip down memory lane for those of us getting reacquainted with it, while also an enthralling and gratifying experience for fresh ears. (text by Tessema Tadele)

Nahawa Doumbia - Kanawa (CS)
Nahawa Doumbia - Kanawa (CS)Awesome Tapes From Africa
¥1,368
The meaning of “Kanawa” is so simple. We see our children trying to cross the ocean all the time. I said that many of our children die in the ocean and some of them while crossing the Sahara. Some climb over the wires across the borders and they have gotten shot. We have asked them not to leave and instead stay home. But I ask them why do they leave their country? Why do they decide to go? They said that they leave because of the family situation or problems, poverty, and unemployment. We told them if ever they are to leave, they should privilege legal ways. They should abide by laws vigorously when they are to emigrate. That’s better than hiding in boats or adopting other illegal means. I ask them to stay and work in their country. So that we can help each other find a solution to this problem. I call on the UN and African leaders so that we can coordinate our efforts to find a solution, to create jobs for them so that young people stop leaving. This song is about that message and I chose it as the title of my album because I like it. My choice is because it is very meaningful and it is something we see on a daily basis. I chose it in order to alert and sensitize everybody about this question of illegal immigration. To sensitize our brothers and sisters. It is a message. That’s why I chose it as the title of my album so that everybody can learn from it and also so that there is a reduction in the number of people emigrating. To sensitize them so that some can stay home and grow the land. Leaving is not the only solution. That’s my message. 
— NAHAWA DOUMBIA

Omni Gardens - Moss King (CS+DL)Omni Gardens - Moss King (CS+DL)
Omni Gardens - Moss King (CS+DL)Moon Glyph
¥2,013
Omni Gardens is the experimental ambient/new age project by Moon Glyph head Steve Rosborough. Recorded at home in Portland during the early days of covid, "Moss King" is relaxed home listening for difficult times. The first Omni Gardens release, “West Coast Escapism”, was expansive with a broad selection of soothing synth tones and morphing samples. In contrast, "Moss King" is a smaller, more intimate affair, full of fuzzy new age moog drifters and self-captured field recordings. The tracks bounce between minimalist twinkling synth plucks, ocean-backed synth pads and ambient pop forms. Playful, serene and healing sounds for watching your plants grow.
Gustavo Yashimura - Living Legend Of The Ayacucho Guitar (CS)Gustavo Yashimura - Living Legend Of The Ayacucho Guitar (CS)
Gustavo Yashimura - Living Legend Of The Ayacucho Guitar (CS)Hive Mind Records
¥2,394
Gustavo Yashimura-Arce comes from humble origins in the Ayacucho region of the Peruvian Andes. He started playing guitar in 1987 and 2 years later he travelled to Montevideo in Uruguay to study music at La Casa de la Guitarra. After spending some years playing classical guitar in Japan, Gustavo returned to Peru in 2004 and began his intense studies of the Andean guitar styles of the Ayacucho region. Later, in 2008 he found the perfect teacher – 80 year old veteran guitarist Don Alberto Juscamaita Gastelú, known locally as Rahtako. Through Don Alberto, Gustavo was able to learn songs and styles from across the Andes, though the main focus remained on the traditional styles of the Ayacucho region. The Ayacucho Province of Peru is mountainous and remote and mainly populated by indigenous people of Quechuan descent, with the main language remaining Quechua, or Runasimi ('the People's Language'). The Quechuan people of the Andes remained resistant to Spanish colonisation and fierce in their preservation of their culture but on this album you will hear one of those strange, hybrid artefacts that can arise when cultures meet. The Spanish guitar was taken by the Quechuan people of the Ayacucho region and employed as a new means to convey their traditional music. The melodies you hear are versions of the traditional Huayno melodies usually played on harps, Andean pipes, charango and mandolin. Gustavo is joined by Luis Sulca Galindo on second guitar and Greys Berrocal Huaya on vocals on 4 tracks on the album. We've been extremely happy to work with Henkel Bellido (Sounds of the Andes) to bring this beautiful music to light.
kelz - 5am and I Can't Sleep (CS)kelz - 5am and I Can't Sleep (CS)
kelz - 5am and I Can't Sleep (CS)Bayonet Records
¥1,463
Kelz’s debut ‘5am and I Can’t Sleep’ delivers us a frothy dream-pop introduction to the mind of Vietnamese-American producer and multi-instrumentalist Kelly Truong. Written and recorded in the middle of the night in her Orange County, California home, these songs tell a nostalgic yet hopeful story following loss. For kelz, carefully looping beats, tinkering with synthetic waveforms, and interweaving guitar picking serves as a meditation--a mode of processing emotions and the inevitable passing of time. Front and center are her airy vocals, recorded in a whisper so as to not wake people in the other room. Each song folds in on itself like a wave’s undertow, reorienting infectious melodies from tracks previous. When asked about the tracks, kelz reflects on the process as “feeling like running towards something” but not knowing what it is. Escape with kelz on a long night drive with this effervescent electro-pop debut.
Time Wharp - Spiro World (CS+DL)Time Wharp - Spiro World (CS+DL)
Time Wharp - Spiro World (CS+DL)Leaving Records
¥1,954
Spiro World (or One Must First Become Aware Of The Body) is the definitive Time Wharp full-length coming of age collection. Unhinged to any particular music scene, Spiro’s (in reference to prescription drug spironolactone) unabashed yet vulnerable all genre album story by its Brooklyn-based artist Kaye Loggins describes somatically profound personal experiences of derealization, the endocrinological mixolydian heaven & pharma hell on earth, and love letters to New York. Imagining and creating futures can be frightening, joyous, difficult, effortless, inevitable.

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