Boomkat Product Review:
Argentinian producer Facundo Arena, aka The Kyoto Connection, fetishizes 1980s Japan on this blank-faced "love-letter" to environmental ambient music. Like Hiroshi Yoshimura but without the good bits.
Apparently when Arena heard Hiroshi Yoshimura's "Green" in the early 2010s, guided by YouTube's algorithm, he was transported back to his youth, when the Argentinian was taking karate lessons and watching martial arts movies. Honestly, we're not quite sure which martial arts movies he was watching cuz to our knowledge, environmental ambient music didn't make an appearance, but who knows. Arena's latest is a dedication to this era and style of music, and a "sonic imagination" of locations around Kyoto, a place he's never visited.
Musically, "The Flower, the Bird and the Mountain" hovers between affable IDM fluff and synth-powered Yoshimura tributes - none of this music is particularly essential, but it's not offensive either. It's assisted by the inclusion of on-the-ground material from Kyoto-based artist Masafumi Komatsu, but the album rarely matches the quality of its influences, or the promise of its concept.