99LETTERS - Makafushigi
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A companion album to the recently released Kaibou Zukan double LP, here we find Takahiro Kinoshita further exploring his “gagaku techno” concept across five long-form tracks that push the material into grimier, almost industrial territory.
The title of the last record translates as “anatomical picture book”, reflected in music that sounds for the most part open, direct and danceable. Makafushigi though essentially means “mystery tape” and this is echoed in shadowy textures, metallic clangs and mood pieces that could easily soundtrack the bleakest of film noirs. It’s not a one dimensional listen however, light frequently pierces holes in the gauzy curtain of these immersive jams, particularly where loops of the traditional Japanese string and percussion instruments that were chopped, screwed and utilised to such great effect on Kaibou Zukan enter the mix.
The more electro-tinged passages could also be interpreted as a fresh take on the concrete and technology obsessed mid-70s Kraftwerk of Autobahn and Radio-Activity.