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IKEDA, KEN - Kosame

Format: CD
Label & Cat.Number: SPEKK KK:024
Release Year: 2010
Note: interesting new work by this Japanese artist (known from two TOUCH albums years ago) about the "Yuragi" (fluctuation), using a hand-made rubber instrument and nature sounds to "set sounds free from pre-existing frames"
Price (incl. 19% VAT): €16.00

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"For the past few years, I've been approaching the idea of taking sine waves (which is eminent in techno and ambient music) into the inner side of human thought, reinterpreting the circulating harmonic overtones within the vagueness of the word "Yuragi (=fluctuation)". But under the global economy, techno or so-called ambient music were standardized to a somewhat convenient product, and there seems to be no room left for the vagueness. But again, these sounds took birth by sampling and simulating pre-existing music. At the time, there were at least some critical elements left. Around the last album, I felt the limit of using techno-ish sine waves. I decided to go on a venture listening closely and touching the sounds surrounded in personal daily life, to re-recognize "time" and "space" as a sound artist from the point where the sounds evolve and fade away. Raindrops on the window, a squeaking pillar, an opened door, stairs, boiling water in the kitchen.... There were Yuragi everywhere. I couldn't help myself being fascinated by the subtle, yet dense frequencies within the nature such as the shore, and mountain trees. It was not just by sampling this myriad of sounds, but the challenge of how distant I could get from the conventional ideas and sense of values of music, by taking it as a movement of myself as an individual.

This time again, I used the handmade wood & rubber instrument (SD404) to form an opposite relationship between "performer" and "nature" (or "captured sounds" versus "unable-to-capture sounds"). When you actually play it, you can feel the Yuragi within the instrument itself. The shades of the effects like "cutoff" and "resonance" essentially becomes closer to the beauty of nature. "Kosame" is an experiment to set the sounds free from pre-existing frames, by overlapping the randomly listed nature sounds and the improvisational elements of an individual. Yuragi arises from these two unique movements without going against each other."
[Ken Ikeda]


"The work of Ken Ikeda is always outside the norm of any classification, here revealing his most experimental work yet. Kosame is at once a physical work of beautiful noise as it is one that vacillates in its own improv juices. The compositions are jagged and oblique, but fun to listen to over time, restless as it becomes especially on Kiro | Return (帰路). The title track with its tongue-play whispers doesnt fail at being under the radar just enough to seem ultimately ambiguous alongside jangly keys and an atonal, anxious string strumming throughout. Mikazuki | Crecent (三日月) samples the airy sounds of a balloon being blown somewhat comically and digital water trickling. But the liner notes say something about drinking champagne, so imbibe away! Kosame has several distorted futuristic sounds and on Seijaku | Stillness (静寂) this is very evident, mixed with an awkward blend of random traditional Japanese themes deeply laden. Some of this is processed, some is from prepared quena, shamisen, charango and a host of other numbered instruments. On Stillness, Ikeda (a graduate of Berklees College of Music) infuses the sounds of boiling water with just the right amount of jitter off the teapots top. His music is of science, of longing and of expecting the unexpected." [TJ Norris, Toneshift]