Mizukagami [CS; Sacred Phrases]

This review almost began with a bulleted list of Hakobune reviews present on the TMT website. However, it may have run against the notion I have, that despite myriad releases and a lot of positive press, Takahiro Yorifuji is still an underrated and often overlooked artist. Yet the two aren’t counterarguments, just different views in a crowded musical landscape. The slow tectonic pulse of Yorifuji’s latest, Mizukagami, will bring those thoughts into closer alignment with the sheer force and mountainous majesty of our ever-changing crust. The many variants of ambient and drone under the Hakobune canon are well worth exploring, but this is the beginning of a new phase — one where Yorifjui’s work begins to collide and fold onto itself. It’s controlled chaos; Yorifuji a deft composer who can wield the forces of nature into an elegant tendrils of earthly wonder. For as salt-of-the-earth as Yorifjui’s work may be, Mizukagami is also delicate and restrained. It’s the spider creating not a crude web to catch food, but a symmetric tapestry that is aesthetically pleasing as much as it is utilitarian. So as Yorifuji moves heavy plates underneath the surface, he’s also carefully crafting fragile landscape above it. It’s a delicate balance to levy power with beauty, but Mizukagami does it without repeating itself or Yorifuji’s previous work. However, this is but the calm. At some point, the lava pools and magma chambers created in this terraforming will come gushing toward the surface with real force, and when it happens it will mark the moment when we’ll have to reckon with the true power and ability of Yorifuji’s Hakobune.


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