Boomkat Product Review:
Japan’s Meitei reprises his cultish role as medium for a fading traditional culture with the 2nd of his ‘Kofu’ sessions, following from the ghost storytelling of his prized albums ‘Kwaidan’ & ‘Komachi’.
Meitei bequeaths a dozen further vignettes from the sessions behind the first ‘Kofū’ after raking back thru them and deciding the story wasn’t quite complete. Far from a leftovers album, ‘Kofū II’ feels like returning to a dream previously experienced. In a diffractive flow of fleeting passages and more richly realised (yet still spectrally elusive) parts, the album casts us back inbetween eras, conjuring a space that’s ghostly and melancholy, keeping listeners rapt like a good tale should.
Meitei’s knack for lyrical melody carries the story as much as his delicate yet rough hewn textural backdrops. It starts out tentatively optimistic with the whistling intro of ‘Megumi’ and immersively dusky plucks and cut-up vox of ‘Tōkaidō’, with his sort of frayed ‘90s backpacker hip hop chops coming into play on the looping whirligig ‘Happyaku-yachō’. Moments of reflective solitude in ‘Kaworu’ lend the album its dreamlike cadence, subliminally passing into groggy daydreams of ‘Yoshiwara’ in a way realign Christos Chondropoulos’ Athenian Primitive explorations, and peel off into the ambient flocking of ‘Shurayuki hime’, with elegant sashays such as ’Shinobi’ keeping the feeling featherlite and heady with it into the dedication to ‘Akira Kurosawa’ and the album’s warbling ancient Japanese blues on ‘Ji’.