Boomkat Product Review:
Smalltown Supersound’s immaculate Le Jazz-Non Series returns with this special edition set of recordings from acclaimed film director Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s longtime sound designer and composer Koichi Shimizu, including first time vinyl appearances of music from ‘Memoria’ and the Palme d'Or winning ‘Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives’. Sprawling, atmospheric, sometimes unexpectedly caustic gear at the intersection of Japanese Environmental music and Autechre’s iced fascinations.
Best known for his work for legendary Thai director Apichatpong Weerasethakul (he even designed the enigmatic "bang" in 2021's labyrinthine 'Memoria'), Japan’s Koichi Shimizu has been honing a unique musical language since the early '90s, where some of his earliest material can be found on a split LP with Yoshiteru Himuro via once-iconic imprint Worm Interface (itself home to music from Autechre side-line Gescom). 'Imprint', was initially released quietly back in 2021 and has been remastered for this new edition, removing one track and bumping it up with four more, making it all available on vinyl for the first time.
The album offers a perfect overview of Shimizu’s broad palette, ranging from fine-wrought keys to electronic brutalism and guttural rhythmic pulses, plotted with an underlying narrative cadence that evinces his ability to heighten the impact of moving image, whilst also colouring the imagination with ephemeral sound imagery. His tekkerz are in bracing, anticipatory effect on a retooled, expanded version of his music from ‘Memoria’ within the convulsive, swarming silhouette of ‘Imprint’, and ‘The Path’ finds his aural accompaniment to ‘Uncle Boonmee…’ given room to breathe and develop into an unexpected, OOBE-like experience. In ‘Moth’ he magnifies and anthropomorphises a winged insect with finely chiselled technical nous, and his exquisite arrangement to ‘Faded Sign’ is somehow comparable to the ephemeral emotional register of cinematic collaborations between Ryuichi Sakamoto and Carsten Nicolai.