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友川カズキ - Kazuki Tomokawa 1975–1977 (3CD BOX)
友川カズキ - Kazuki Tomokawa 1975–1977 (3CD BOX)Blank Forms Editions
¥5,238
Finally, His First Album: The Flower of Youth / Souls / Yumiko’s Spring / Song from the Void / Grave / Hail the Wonderful Law of the Lotus Sutra / Phone Call / An Akita Fox Song Run Amok / World School / Resistance, Age 23 / Mr. Ishimori / First Bon / A Cat Burglar in the Night / Bright Night Straight from the Throat: Grampa / Goddam Winter / American Kuyuran / Dagadzugu / A Fitting Adolescence / Footbridge / The Spring is Here Again Song / Fridge / Smithereens / Don’t Kill the Sea Lions / Harmonica / A Little Ditty / Stone A String of Paper Cranes Clenched between My Teeth: Try Saying You’re Alive! / Kill or Be Killed / Memory / Got a Problem? / Namahage / My Hometown is Also Inside a Dog / The Boys of Hachiryū / The Donpan Song Goes Off the Rails / Runaway Boy / Missed My Time to Die A poet, soothsayer, bicycle race tipster, actor, prolific drinker, self-taught guitarist, and living legend of Japanese sound, Kazuki Tomokawa catapulted into Tokyo’s avant-folk scene in the mid-1970s, forging a sound and sensibility marked by throat-wrenching vocals and searing ennui. Among his musical peers in postwar Japan, Tomokawa distinguished himself as a pioneer of radical individualism. He had “the personality of a hydrogen bomb”—as the notorious ultraleft band the Brain Police once put it—and a sound to match. Now, Blank Forms Editions gathers Tomokawa’s earliest records for the first time in a deluxe three CD box set comprised of Finally, His First Album (Harvest Records, 1975), Straight from the Throat (Harvest Records, 1976), and A String of Paper Cranes Clenched between My Teeth (Harvest Records, 1977). In each record, Tomokawa shouts, cries, wails, and croons, his folk stylings tinged with psychedelia and swelling into ground-shaking rock.. Many tracks are performed in his native Akita dialect, a highly regional vernacular of north Japan rarely heard beyond the prefecture, and even less often used in music. Matching his guttural, all-out vocals are profoundly existential meditations on everyday life and the world around him; this is, as record executive Kiichi Takara dubs it, “I-music.” It looks toward the interior, the quotidian, and the domestic with piercing and ever-honest eyes. The accompanying liner notes (here translated for the first time) include introductions by Takara, a round table discussion with Brain Police, and lyrics for all three albums—tracking the rise of Tomokawa as the “screaming philosopher” of Japan. The box set will be in conjunction with the release of each record in LP format in 2022, and the musician’s 2015 memoir, Try Saying You’re Alive! (Blank Forms Editions, 2021), the first-ever English translation of his prose; together they provide the definitive introduction to the singular world of Kazuki Tomokawa. Kazuki Tomokawa (b. 1950) is a prolific singer-songwriter from Hachiryū Village (now the town of Mitane) in the Akita Prefecture area of northern Japan. Since his first release in 1975, he has recorded more than thirty albums. The 2010 documentary about his life, La Faute des Fleurs, won the Sound & Vision award at the Copenhagen International Documentary Film Festival, and that same year saw the Japanese release of the book Dreams Die Vigorously Day by Day, a collection of his lyrics spanning forty years. His most recent albums are Vengeance Bourbon (2014) and Gleaming Crayon (2016), both on the Modest Launch label.
Eliane Radigue - Œuvres électroniques (14CD BOX)Eliane Radigue - Œuvres électroniques (14CD BOX)
Eliane Radigue - Œuvres électroniques (14CD BOX)INA-GRM
¥9,937
A 14-disc box set tracing the discography of Eliane Radigue, the Tibetan-meets-electronic music guru, is now available Box with a gorgeous booklet! Having studied at RTF Studios in France under music concretists such as Pierre Schaeffer and Pierre Henry, Eliane Radigue has been creating profound electronic music for decades, and now her historical archive is here! This 14-disc box contains many of her masterpieces released in CD format, including some that are now hard to find, and even includes Metamkine's mini-CD "Biogenesis.
Bernard Parmegiani - L'Œuvre Musicale En 12 CD (12CD BOX)
Bernard Parmegiani - L'Œuvre Musicale En 12 CD (12CD BOX)INA-GRM
¥8,976
The French electronic composer Bernard Parmegiani, one of the most important figures of the French music research group [INA-GRM] founded by Pierre Scheffer, has influenced Aphex Twin, Autechre and Keith Fullerton Whitman. In 2008, to celebrate GRM's 50th anniversary, compiled with 12-CD collection of electronic music works that became very popular and is now hard to find. Winner of the President of the Republic Award at the French ACC Disc Awards(!) A 92-page booklet (in both English and French) is included. This is a must-have for all fans of electronic and experimental music.
Piero Umiliani - Library Music - Volume 1 (13CD Box)
Piero Umiliani - Library Music - Volume 1 (13CD Box)Cinedelic
¥13,981
Edition of 500 copies. Wooden box set, numbered. From the original master tapes. Includes a booklet. * Piero Umiliani is unquestionably one of the most consistent figures in terms of soundtrack music and library music worldwide. This precious 13CD Box is dedicated to the period of greatest maturity and artistic freedom which coincides with the creation of his personal studio: the Sound Work Shop. The 82 square meter room is elaborated with a particular acoustic treatment suitable for multi-track recording. The instruments available were the best of world production; to these were numerous instruments from all over the globe thanks to his passion for travel. It is also equipped with the best of the most modern projection and slow motion systems. Of the 13 albums included, spanning a period from 1971 to 1983, 9 had never been reissued digitally; the transfer took place from the original tapes provided by the heirs who continue to take care of everything concerning the artist's life with the utmost attention. With the most bizarre pseudonyms we listen to the Maestro confront himself with the most disparate genres: percussive and electronic experiments to drive sampling lovers crazy (CD1); the rock-prog-psych of The Braen's Machine, a group formed with Alessandro Alessandroni (CD2/3); the delicate melodies, lounge; groovy exotic (CD4/7/11/12), modern classical music (CD5); experimental dramatic tensions with synth, bass and primitive percussion on a string orchestra carpet (CD6); disco-funk-jazz (CD8); sound exploration in psychic disorders dictated by the human condition (CD9); pure Italian jazz (CD10); experimental ambient with synths (13). The luxurious wooden box includes a sequentially numbered booklet up to 500. The paper CD covers are reproductions of the original LP releases. details: CD1 PERCUSSIONI ED EFFETTI SPECIALI | 1972 1. Problematica giovanile / 2. Problematica giovanile n.2 / 3. Subacquea / 4. Bongos in suspense / 5. Dinamica in beat / 6. Dinamica in beat n.2 / 7. Contrasto ritmico / 8. Percussioni speciali / 9. Protesta giovanile / 10. Timpani statici / 11. Timpani in movimento / 12. Marasma / 13. Timbales / 14. Ritmi in swing / 15. Ritmi in swing n.2 / 16. Fascia astrale / 17. Stato ipnotico / 18. Dinamica in tensione / 19. Dinamica in tensione n. 2 / 20. Esplosioni / 21. Esplosioni n.2 / 22. Distorsioni / 23. Detective / 24. Echi della natura / 25. Fascia metallica / 26. Organo in suspense / 27. Battimenti / 28. Battimenti n.2 / 29. Segnali morse / 30. Segnali morse n.2 / 31. Sottosuolo CD2 UNDERGROUND | 1971 1. Fying / 2. Imphormal / 3. Murder / 4. Gap / 5. Militar Police / 6. New Experiences / 7. Fall Out / 8. Obstinacy / 9. Description CD3 TEMI RITMICI E DINAMICI | 1973 1. Movimento / 2. Dinamica / 3. Competizione / 4. Attività All’Aperto / 5. Ritmica Sportiva / 6. Esercizi Ginnici / 7. Gara / 8. Dilettanti / 9. Rinuncia / 10. Passeggiata / 11. Allenamento / 12. Aspetti Grotteschi CD4 NUOVE ARIE ROMANTICHE |1974 (1st time in digital) 1. Dolce Flauto / 2. Neve Sul Campanile / 3. Divertimento / 4. Ispirazione / 5. Luminosita’ / 6. Meditazione / 7. Bachiana / 8. Mozartiana / 9. Dolce Ed Austero / 10. Modo Settecentesco / 11. Tranquillita’ / 12. Ritrovarsi / 13. Malinconia D’Autunno / 14. Perla Di Ghiaccio CD5 MUSICA CLASSICA PER L'UOMO D'OGGI | 1974 (1st time in digital) 1. Impegno / 2. Elevazione / 3. Con Nostalgia / 4. Aria Di Fiesta / 5. Idea Mistica / 6. Gioioso / 7. Vocazione / 8. Molto Solenne / 9. Nuovo Umanesimo / 10. Ricostruzione / 11. Allegretto Classico / 12. Origini / 13. A Misura D’Uomo / 14. Preludio Arioso / 15. Come Un Corale CD6 MONDO INQUIETO | 1974 (1st time in digital) 1. Mondo Inquieto / 2. Emarginati / 3. Stato D’Ansia / 4. Attualita’ / 5. Riforme / 6. Boicottaggio / 7. Strategia / 8. Recessione / 9. Fermenti / 11. Doppio Gioco / 12. Incidenti / 13. Situazione / 14. Sotto Il Talone / 15. Eversione / 16. Crisi / 17. Popoli Inquieti / 18. Sanzioni. / 19. Inquietudine CD7 MOTIVI ALLEGRI E DISTENSIVI | 1978 (1st time in digital) 1. Su Con La Vita! / 2. Su Con La Vita! / 3. Su Con La Vita! / 4. Su Con La Vita! / 5. La Bella Vita / 6. Storie Di Villagio / 7. La Voce Dell’Organetto / 8. Tromba In Vacanza / 9. Sax In Vacanza / 10. Archi Innamorati / 11. Idea Romantica / 12. Idea Romantica / 13. Happy Boogie / 14. Happy Boogie CD8 DISCOMUSIC | 1978 1. Carousel / 2. Discomania / 3. Optimist / 4. Hobby / 5. Odeon / 6. Skypass / 7. Impact / 8. Forcing / 9. Marlowe / 10. Happy End CD9 TENSIONE | 1979 (1st time in digital) 1. Staccato E Tremolo / 2. Pedale In Suspence / 3. L’Orco / 4. Segnali Da Marte / 5. Prefiche / 6. Clavinet Suspence / 7. Pianofender Suspence / 8. Tremolo Ossessivo / 9. Tema In Suspence / 10. Intermezzo Neutro / 11. Pedale Lancinante / 12. Espressivo E Drammatico / 13. Notte D’Orrore / 14. Basso In Suspence / 15. Suspence Sommessa / 16. L’Orchessa / 17. Marcia Suspence / 18. Archi Informali / 19. Fascia Ossessiva / 20. Suspence Interlocutoria CD10 FILM CONCERTO | 1979 (1st time in digital) 1. Blues For Gassman / 2. Tension / 3. Smog / 4. Thinkin’ Blues / 5. Twilight At Los Angeles / 6. A Cavallo Della Tigre / 7. Solitudine / 8. Solitudine 2 / 9. Mah-Na' Mah-Na’ / 10. La Ragazza Dalla Pelle Di Luna / 11. O Dolci Baci / 12. Quando La Coppia Scoppia / 13. Insieme CD11 PANORAMA ITALIANO | 1979 (1st time in digital) 1. Calen Di Maggio / 2. Torna Primavera / 3. Tempo Di Madrigale / 4. Paesanella / 5 Paesanella / 6. Tempo Di Madrigale / 7. Nostalgia Di Marinaro / 8. Farina E Festa / 9. Stornello Felice / 10. Stornello Dolce / 11. Stornello Triste / 12. Richiamo Alpino / 13. Trinacria / 14. Notturno Siciliano CD12 ALBUM DI VIAGGIO | 1981 (1st time in digital) 1. Appuntamento Al Plaza / 2. Le Foreste Di Kuala Lumpur / 3. Attico A Montecarlo / 4. Martedi Grasso A N. Orleans / 5. Alabama Song / 6. Ritorno A Chicago / 7. Album Di Viaggio / 8. In Vacanza / 9. Viaggio Sentimentale / 10. Manhattan Blues / 11. Gospel Song / 12. Le Cascate Di Iguaçú CD13 SUSPENCE ELETTRONICA | 1983 (1st time in digital) 1. Sospetto / 2. Segni Premonitori / 3. Relitti / 4. Nave Spia / 5. Mutazioni / 6. Ballata Tragica / 7. Attesa Ansiosa / 8. Incubo / 9. Batticuore / 10. Rintocchi / 11. Sinistro Carillon / 12. Schizofrenia / 13. Leggermente Misterioso / 14. Degrado
Roland Kayn - Tektra (5CD BOX)Roland Kayn - Tektra (5CD BOX)
Roland Kayn - Tektra (5CD BOX)Reiger Records Reeks
¥7,689

A masterpiece returns.
The last five years have seen the reemergence of a towering figure of electronic music. Through multiple boxed set releases, and a dedicated Bandcamp page releasing unheard works at an unfaltering pace, the work of pioneering cybernetic composer Roland Kayn has reached a wider audience than ever before.
Now, a bedrock work in establishing this reputation is available once more, as Tektra, his overarching landmark work of the early 1980s, is finally restored to availability after decades out of print.
Reissued by Reiger Records Reeks – the composer’s own label, now presided over by his daughter Ilse – Tektra here unfolds across 5 CDs. The new edition was mastered by Jim O’Rourke from a transfer of the original tapes present in the Lydia and Roland Kayn Archive. It implements Kayn’s directions on crossfades and edits as fully as possible, while also reincorporating almost 5 minutes of music previously unavailable in digital format.
Kayn’s glacial, otherworldly electronic landscapes have always been somewhat at odds with the world of contemporary composition his background and training located him within. His rejection of compositional dogma and traditional musical structures eventually led him to discover a source of endless inspiration in the cybernetic generation of material, and the curatorial act of listening itself.
Perhaps this is why Kayn’s recognition is only approaching its zenith today: his work is far from the passive, unobtrusive world of “ambient”, but its embrace of extended duration, drone-like textures, and the exploration of space as timbre are undeniable shared attributes. Today’s most forward-looking musical practitioners – many of whom cite Kayn as a direct influence – have perhaps discovered a similar territory, at the threshold point where mindblowing complexity approaches the overwhelming sensation of true immersion.

Roland Kayn - Scanning (10CD BOX)Roland Kayn - Scanning (10CD BOX)
Roland Kayn - Scanning (10CD BOX)Reiger Records Reeks
¥12,327

A hitherto-unreleased electronic masterpiece from Roland Kayn, singular pioneer of cybernetic music.

Over a period spanning the late 70s through the early 80s, Kayn (1933–2011) issued a quintet of extended works that quietly but definitively redrew the map of electronic music. Informed by cybernetics and a desire to actualise analogue circuitry as an agency in the compositional process, this music adopted a form that can only be described as oceanic, as side after side of vinyl allowed a wholly new vocabulary of electronic sound to find its shape.

In the decades that followed, these multi-LP boxed-set releases became hallowed documents of contemporary music (as well as highly prized collectors’ items). Kayn’s initially subtle influence belied a gradual shift towards the widespread adoption of his ideas and practices in the 21st century, incorporating both the rise in popularity of modular synthesis as a music-making tool, and the huge advancements in machine learning and AI.

Following the recent reissue of ‘Simultan’ (1977) and the first-time release of late work ‘A Little Electronic Milky Way of Sound’ (2009), it was clear that a new generation of listeners and musicians were eager to discover Kayn’s vision in all its vastness.

Kayn's own label, Reiger Records Reeks, has been reawakened by his daughter Ilse, and her long-cherished dream of releasing this music is now finally a reality. Across 10 CDs of immersive audio, expertly remastered by Kayn aficionado Jim O’Rourke, listeners are now finally able to digest Kayn's little-known masterpiece, and to inhabit sonic territory that has waited unspoilt for decades.
 

YoshimiOizumikiYoshiduO(YoshimiO x Kiyoshi Izumi) - To The Forest To Live A Truer Life (CD+Poster)
YoshimiOizumikiYoshiduO(YoshimiO x Kiyoshi Izumi) - To The Forest To Live A Truer Life (CD+Poster)Shocky
¥2,640
Inspired by how she feels at the moment, what direction she’s facing, the people she’s surrounded by, and the energy of the location, YoshimiO uses the piano and her voice to create sound. izumikiYoshi uses a microphone to pick up the raw sounds created by YoshimiO and feeds it through his modular synthesizer, where the sounds undergo spectral processing and modulation. These electronic tones are combined and mixed again with YoshimiO’s live sounds in a spontaneous manner, to output the sounds that were only in their imagination. That is how the music of YoshimiOizumikiYoshiduO is created.
冥丁 - 古風 II (LP)
冥丁 - 古風 II (LP)KITCHEN. LABEL
¥4,290

Meitei’s 2020 album 'Kofū' was the bold bookend to an expedition, where sounds were first navigated and then subverted in 2018’s 'Kwaidan' and 2019’s 'Komachi'.

All three albums were Meitei’s attempt at immersive storytelling, reimagining moments of Japanese history he felt were being washed away – not least by the unforgiving sands of time – through wistful compositions that stretched across ambient music, hauntology, and musique concrete.

When it came to finalizing 'Kofū', Meitei found he was left with over 60 fully realized tracks, bursting with ideas that fired in divergent, curious directions. Meitei was content with the 13 tracks he had selected. But when it came time to begin his next album, he found that it had been sitting in front of him all along. He realized his work wasn’t over yet.

Meitei sounds right at home celebrating the past he first reimagined in his previous work. The merriment is palpable in its first two tracks of 'Kofū II' – a loop of cheery whistling amidst the clanking of wood leads into strings, cricket sounds and flutes, all united in bustling harmony.

'Happyaku-yachō' is where it comes into focus. Pitch-shifted vocal samples roam around in the crowded sonic field. “My image of this music is that it expresses the vibrant mood of Edo's merchant culture,” says Meitei, “where old Japanese dwellings were densely packed together in a vast expanse of land.” The affair becomes bittersweet as the track leads into the desolate 'Kaworu', a compositional piece lifted from his 'Komachi' sessions – a final requiem to his late grandmother.

The album is bursting with spectral vignettes of wandering samurais, red lanterns, ninjas, puppet theatres, poets, even a vengeful assassin ('Shurayuki hime', known to Western audiences as ‘Lady Snowblood’).

'Saryō' is as elegant and refined as you would expect. It induces stillness in its repetition, with each synth note a brushstroke. It was inspired by a Sengoku-era tea house he once visited, designed by national icon Sen no Rikyū. Meitei tied it to the reaction he felt while poring over the ink paintings in his grandmother’s house. “The decayed earthen walls and faded tatami mats gave me an emotional impression,” he says. “And the cosmic flow of time drifting in the small room. I decided to put my impression of this into music.”

In 'Akira Kurosawa', an appropriately thunderous track, Meitei finds deep resonance in his vast filmography, which drew equally from Japan’s rich heritage and troubled circumstances post-WWII.

'Kofū II' is not a leftovers album, nor is it a straightforward companion piece. In this album, Meitei has his biggest reckoning with the Japanese identity yet. Over the years, he has attempted to peel back what he believes has defined Japan and its people. After seeking answers with three full-length albums, his fourth poses more questions.

If his first three albums inspired a sense of longing – or, perhaps inevitably, fed an irreparable nostalgia doomed to history – 'Kofū II' compels us to reassess our relationship with the past. By constantly looking back, are we ever afforded a clearer present? After capturing the “lost Japanese mood”, where does that leave its country in the modern world? Meitei offers no immediate answers with 'Kofū II'. It forces you to sit with its disparate moods, to meditate amidst the textured fragments.

'Kofū II' will be released on 180g LP, CD and digital format on December 10, 2021 (LP expected to land January 28, 2022) via KITCHEN. LABEL. Both LP and CD format are presented in a debossed sleeve with obi strip and include a 16-page insert with words in Japanese and English from Meitei, printed on premium paper stock with design by KITCHEN. LABEL founder Ricks Ang, and is mastered by Chihei Hatakeyama in Tokyo, Japan. 

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