Boomkat Product Review:
Mmmm, under license of japan overseas, Cologne's globetrotting Karaoke Kalk label bring forwards their latest far eastern finds. Their album from Takagi Maskatsu last year tapped into the well of feeling around short, filmic, almost narrative vignettes - the loungey feeling blended perfectly with a certain fresh charm. Takeo's new album is the kind of record with a pig in a sailor suit and a bird on the front: don't come expecting hardcore beats - the mood here is gleefully eccentric, playful, colourful, cheerful. The cover illustrations by Jungo Terade set you to wondering; after looking at the pictures a bit longer, beginning to hear tentative moments of tacks, if they couldn't be part of a very sad story indeed, a feeling of melancholy sneaking in now and then , almost by stealth. Takeo Toyama's music alternates between little creaking sounds and atmospheric flute and violin arrangements, making "hello 88" a mostly instrumental, again narrative piece of music, with many highlights. Sometimes even vocals are added, as in "hello birds", which brings to mind the outright pop of the Beach Boys. More off kilter pop-experimental delights from the ever beguiling Karaoke Kalk.