Japonisme (2)

April 25, 2009 3:14 AM

MeFiMu stalwart micayetoca asked me if there was anything else from the Japonisme project, so I dug up this other one that I'd done a while back. It's just a simple little ditty that uses an a cappella vocal (slowed down a bit) from a 7" record I picked up at a flea market, to which I've added a rhythm track and some bamboo jaw harp. I put it to some video footage I shot here in Tokyo, too, and uploaded it to YT earlier today. If you'd like to see it...

posted by flapjax at midnite (9 comments total) 6 users marked this as a favorite

Man, I really love these. I love them in and of 'itselves' and I also feel they could easily catapult you to cult stardom. But oh, wait, you are already a cult star. They could add a great chapter to your bio, or another legend.

I was listening to it here, thinking how well it would go with film pieces as Baraka and Koyaanisqatsi and then I went and saw the clip you did. The clip is sick (in a good way), fantastic and much better than what I was thinking.

One little thing, there is this high pitched sound that comes in at 01:23 that sounds a lot like tinnitus (or at least like the sound ringing one gets after being exposed to very loud and sudden sounds). Do you hear it in there?
posted by micayetoca at 5:48 AM on April 25, 2009

Oh, and I can't favorite stuff anymore because of the googleapi.com/NoScript thang. But this is definitely a favorite.
posted by micayetoca at 5:49 AM on April 25, 2009

mica, the sound in at 1:23 is either a synth or a sample, I can't remember which. Probably a synth. It's a triplet against the basic pulse. You'll notice it's the very last sound you hear at the very end of the piece. And it's followed by another triplet part (placed at another point in the beat), from another synth, that comes in at 2:17, so you get this phasing of triplets.

And, so glad you like the piece. Thanks for reminding me about it!
posted by flapjax at midnite at 6:28 AM on April 25, 2009

Holy cow, this is freaking awesome. I... am in a trance now. Beautiful. How do I hear more of this?
posted by ORthey at 11:50 AM on April 25, 2009

The music is great for the video. I kept glancing away and whenever I looked back the face looked as though it could be the vocalist. The reveal of the crowded street was very effective as well.

I've never recorded mouth harp but it must take some skill to get it sounding so good.
posted by dagosto at 12:54 PM on April 25, 2009

How do I hear more of this?

Send me money. Plenty money.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 2:45 PM on April 25, 2009

Ya, this is really nice flapjax. Any idea what the lyric means?
posted by chococat at 7:19 PM on April 25, 2009

Nah, chococat, that's way past me. I know many Japanese often have trouble understanding these kind of things too: they're often in some old regional dialect, and sung in a stylized way that can make them difficult to understand.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 7:35 PM on April 25, 2009

Great song, I love the video too--it brings me back, and now I'm missing Tokyo again. I couldn't help but laugh at the man's disembodied, airbrushed face staring at me with that vacuous expression. I couldn't really read while I lived in Japan so this really brings me back to that experience of being illiterate in a foreign land. I used to get the same impression from watching that phony smoking man with the gravelly voice that used to be on all the Japanese talk shows a couple of years ago, or those way-too-happy men in the beer commercials sucking back pints like they were possessed by beer demons. It's how I imagine drug-induced brain damage must feel. Anyways, now maybe I go to shopping, finish!
posted by Hoopo at 7:45 AM on May 2, 2009

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