Debuting in Kotto Dori hideout Chambres D’hotes on December 14 is Domo Arigato, the party with, as its name suggests, an underlying theme of gratitude. And the first bestowee of thanks—served with an eclectic and riotous melee of multi-genre beats, themes and visuals—is Chicago band Anathallo. The indie art-pop act has just launched a new disc, Canopy Glow, and completed a Japan tour. Vocalist Matthew Joynt will take to the wheels of steel along with a mob of Tokyo’s underground beat-meisters. Dub- and reggae-fuelled Kenta and Tokyo-based electro warlord Maxwell will add to the shenanigans, while disco- and electro-tinged Dirk Bite, aka Jaybee of Loudminorityradio notoriety, ices what should be quite the delectable cake.
Domo Arigato@Chambres D’hotes, Dec 14. JC
by Don Crispy
Based in Hokkaido, the ambient techno producer has a style
all his own, as his album Ring makes clear
Takahashi, a.k.a. Koss
Maybe its the air, but Sapporo producer Kuniyuki Takahashi,
a.k.a. Koss, sounds somehow different from Tokyo producers.
While electronica creators in the capital tend to reflect
the busy sounds of the megalopolis in their productions, Kosss
new album is suffused with a sense of calm.
Released on domestic imprint Mule and distributed worldwide
by prestigious German label Kompakt, Ring is a work of deceptive
simplicity. Keyboards weave a hypnotic spell with repetitive
patterns that seem to spiral upwards and outwards. Subterranean
voices filter out of the depths with a message that is heard
and felt but not understood. The effect is mesmerizing: similar
to one you might get from watching the wind ripple the surface
of the ocean for hours on end.
Koss launched his career in the mid 90s, releasing his
first mini-album from the Bassmental label. In 1998 he brought
his sound to the masses by participating in the legendary
Rainbow 2000 event on the slopes of Mt Fuji as a member of
YMO alumni Haruomi Hosonos group.
His carefully crafted ambient techno productions began to
find receptive ears abroad, and Koss began to contribute tracks
to compilations like The Good Good, from Dego of 4 Heros
2000 BLACK label. Koss also became a regular face at Tokyos
soundofspeed and Europes Big Chill parties at the beginning
of the decade, and has performed alongside the Orb and Jeff
Mills, to name just two.
courtesy of Mule
Koss will be performing live at Module in Shibuya alongside
German deep house DJ/producer Henrik Schwartz and local ambient
dubmeisters Kentaro Iwaki, a.k.a. Dub Arachnoid Trim, before
the trio take their tour across Japan...
Meanwhile, bayside superclub Ageha has its usual lineup of
mega DJs slated for July. The cavernous Arena room, with its
ceiling-suspended sound system, should be thumping next weekend
with two of Detroit technos most storied names headlining
Dimension Ks 2300 A.D. event.
In his spring solo Hi Tech Soul tour, Derrick
May demonstrated that, whatever the changing tastes of club
culture, the man still knows how to work a dancefloor with
a masterful blend of pounding, industrial Detroit techno topped
up with disco, soul and house.
As part of the influential Belleville Three in the 80s,
May helped to set the dance music template with his Transmat
label. For the upcoming show hell be sharing the bill
with Stacey Pullen, a fellow Transmat producer whose jazzy
spin on Detroit techno found expression on releases such as
The overseas talent doesnt end there. UK DJs will be
representing a wide range of approaches, including Ian OBriens
tech-house jazz fusion, veteran Norman Jays rare-groove
acid jazz, and young Desyn Masiellos progressive house.
Domestic forces will also be on display, ranging from the
aforementioned Kentaro Iwaki to Tokyo house stalwarts Osamu
M and Mike McKenna.
Endless Flight@Module, July 9. Dimension
K 2300 A.D.@Ageha, July 17. See club listings for details.
Would you like to comment on this article? Send a letter
to the editor at firstname.lastname@example.org.