♫♪  Sugai Ken - 岩石考-yOrUkOrU

The unstoppable Sugai Ken follows his 2017 RVNG Intl. LP, plus another LP, てれんてくだ TELE-N-TECH-DA, released this past April on London’s Discrepant, with a new cassette on Italy’s Yerevan Tapes.

There might be no time to sit and rest on a rock on the side of a long path. In lieu of recuperation there exists meditation, which can take as many forms as there are pebbles along a river bank. Ken uses this release as a space to reflect on geology—its grandeur, its potential for sublime concepts and subliminal healing, and the many refreshing stories embedded in its walls.

As he writes, “massive sounds are placed in key points” throughout the cassette’s eight tracks, immovably mutable as they are. I imagine the songs laid out in a crooked line across a river to connect shore to shore: their conglomerate arrangements weathered to smooth surfaces for skipping, balancing, or deep listening.

Quarries, rock walls, erosion, decay, and valleys are geo-logical touch points for Ken and the metaphors that emanate from each can be heard throughout. So can sounds like stones plopped in a ponds, thrown against gongs, scrunched under toes, used to play xylophones, or tapped together in simple, mindless rhythms. Some really surprise, like the end of the fourth track, “夜鳴き小法師 - YONAKI KOBOSHI”, where what sounds like a cell phone set to vibrate mode grates itself like gravel rubbed against one’s temples. I thought my computer was breaking. Whatever larger idea he is exploring, there are moments of lightness in Ken’s music that I adore—this being one of the cheekiest.

Humming, hymning, and heaving voices seem to speak from within boulders. Stones tumble out of warbling throats. Like pressing one’s ear to a seashell, there are worlds to be heard in that gesture, there, as through here:

Chocolate Grinder

CHOCOLATE GRINDER is our audio/visual section, with an emphasis on the lesser heard and lesser known. We aim to dig deep, but we’ll post any song or video we find interesting, big or small.

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