Boomkat Product Review:
Japanese DIY legend Tamio Shiraishi takes his saxophone literally underground on this one, playing on the train platform and using the subway's characteristic sound.
The first thing you hear on "Subway Stations in Queens" sounds almost like the brakes of a train. Its Shiraishi himself, mimicking the squeal with his saxophone as he stands on a train platform; eventually you hear a rumble in the background, maybe an announcement over the tannoy system. The Japanese performer has been stationed in New York City for the last few years, but has been performing in subway stations for three decades, learning how to balance the acoustics and the ambient sounds with his own wails.
There's no better location for this music; the reverberations that Shiraishi sends echoing down the train tunnels lend his improvisations a truly haunted flavor, and when his performances are met with the whoosh and crunch of actual train cars it becomes thick, textural drone music. Who needs field recordings when you can set up shop alongside a complete noise generator. Inspired stuff.