Utah Kawasaki


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With the exception of the fourth track, all of the music on this disc dates from 1994-1995 (originally issued on privately distributed cassettes), before Utah Kawasaki was out of his teens. It's a fascinating look into the very early career of a musician who, less than ten years hence, would become a prominent member of the Japanese electro-acoustic improv scene. Here, he's already entirely into abstract electronics, although with a slightly more tonal and at times "spacier" feel than would be the case in ensuing years. There's certainly an investigatory quality to many of the pieces here, as though Kawasaki is getting a feel for exactly how large the sound world he's delving into actually is. Most of the tracks are short, laying claim to this or that territory and, perhaps, marking it for further exploration, before restlessly moving on. The disc is half enjoyable enough on its own, half simply interesting for hearing Kawasaki in nascent form. The single new piece is a duet with fellow electronicist Tetsuro Yasunaga and displays his intervening maturation clearly, as he's become less focused on intriguing effects and more on presenting a cohesive filling of musical space. utah.mod.radi is worth hearing for historical value, though listeners looking for a more accurate picture of the Tokyo free improv scene would do better to begin with one of his later works, like his solo Luwa on Rossbin, or one of his many collaborative projects.

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