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Koji Asano - Rabbit Room Reservation Center (2005)


One of the world's most imaginative composers, Koji Asano defies simple categorization. A native of Japan who now resides in Barcelona, Spain, Asano has composed tunes for dance performances, film soundtracks, and video art exhibitions. Solo pianists, guitar bands, computers, string quartets, and his own Tokyo-based group the Koji Asano Ensemble have performed his compositions. According to the San Francisco Weekly, Asano "eschews the well-worn path of familiar music making contexts for a less traveled route involving feedback, computers, and electronics." Asano has collaborated with a diverse range of musical and visual artists. In 1997, he provided accompaniment for exhibitions of sculpture and painting in Moscow, Pushkin, and Latvia. Two years later, he composed a string quartet for a presentation of Bruno Letort's Megapoles project, featuring the Smith Quartet at the Vingtième Théâtre in Paris. In October 2001, a new composition was premiered by Banda Municipal de Barcelona. (Craig Harris)


After a certain lull, Koji Asano was due for a strong release of new music, and this is it. Rabbit Room Reservation Center deserves a place among his five best albums of sound art. It seems that the piano serves once again as the main sound source here, but electronic treatments overpower it completely, letting the acoustic instrument surface only sporadically. The album consists of three pieces of ten, 23, and 24 minutes, presented as movements or variations of a single work. "Rabbit Room Reservation Center I" exposes the material: piano notes shrouded in digital decay that gives birth to aural illusions. There is much room for silence and a certain majesty to the music. The second piece brings listeners down a couple of octaves, with the notes grainy gongs instead of small bells. A thicker soundscape emerges, but there is still a large element of spatialization, as if belfries were calling each other over a particularly echo-prone valley. The third piece pushes the transformation further, straight into harsh noise territory, the piano -- and its computerized bell/gong persona -- drowned out by the ripples of digital reverb. The sound swells up to the size of a full-fledged harsh noise band. The process underpinning the whole album may be simple, but Asano has obviously paid a lot of attention to the composition of these stark pieces. Don't pass this one by. (François Couture)

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4 komentarze:

Pausts pisze...

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rostasi pisze...

Sorry to hear that you've left because I just now discovered your blog
(and was willing to contribute to its continuation). I am hoping that you
are just taking a long well-deserved vacation of, let's say, 6 months and
that you will return because you won't be able to stay away from introducing
us to such wonderful, hard-to-find recordings. If not, then I salute you for what
you've done up to this point. Thank you!

Savage Saints pisze...

Thank you @rostasi - we've just simple have no money for the records. We share our collections with you for free but we also have other commitments....

Rochacrimson pisze...

Thank you Savage Saints for all these relics posting during the last years.Sad to see the end of this great blog :(

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