New Tofubeats Featuring PES From RIP SLYME: “Poolside”

Here’s the latest taste of Tofubeats’ forthcoming major-label debut, First Album, which for those who know their Tofu will realize it sounds very very familiar. That’s because the luxurious beat for “Poolside” first appeared as the opening track for 2012′s fantastic Summer Dreams. The music…along with Tofubeat’s original rap…remain, but it is now joined by a guest appearance from RIP SLYME’s PES, turning it into a bit of a tag-team number. It also has a new video, which you can watch above.

Gaze On: Looprider’s “Farewell”

New Tokyo outfit Looprider features a handful of musicians who have been kicking around the country’s music scene for a while now – fronted by singer Ryotaro Aoki who, full disclosure, I once drunkenly gave a clear file to at a Japan Times function (where we both contribute) – and debut single “Farewell” is the work of folks who know shoegaze. Backed by guest vocals from Merpeoples’ Charlotte, the song features all the fuzzy guitar sounds one would expect from something labelled shoegaze, but which Looprider always pushes forward (and quite deceptive – this doesn’t feel like five minutes). The end result is a driving rock number that manages to be whirling and hooky. Get it here, or listen below.

New Taquwami: “Cinderella”

At long last, Taquwami is back with a proper song. “Cinderella” is a rapid-fire number full of alien voices turned into sonic laser beams, a high-energy affair that pops off in all sorts of directions all at once. There are many producers doing this sort of hyperactive sound now – but Taquwami’s been at it for quite some time, and “Cinderella” hints that he’s gotten an even better grasp on controlled chaos since we last heard from him. Listen below.

New Metronori: Shikata Nashi Kakuri Yo

This, Shibuya-area producer Metronori’s sixth album overall, is also her third release of 2014. More impressive, it is her third great release of the year…she’s improved her bedroom swirl of a sound immensely since she first emerged on Bandcamp, and her trio of albums over the last nine months have found her creating her own sonic world where lyrics ebb and flow out of shifty musical creations. Together they make up one of the year’s strongest bodies of work…and also some of the most daring, moreso than most of the independent artists around Tokyo have dared.

Her newest is a brief four-songs long, but finds Metronori continuing to push her minimalist trip forward. Opener “M-nlighting” plays out like a bedroom version of Radiohead’s “Everything In Its Right Place,” electronics glazing a simple beat while her vocals drift deeper in the mix. Other songs are more slippery, synths and electro blips cruising off in various directions, but always forming some sort of base for a woozy pop song to develop (even if that base is might unstable, it’s there). Get it here, or listen below.

New Ryuuta Takaki: Fleeting Bloom

Producer Ryuuta Takaki uploaded a new four-song collection earlier this week, and it is a great option if you are looking for a comedown. Fleeting Bloom is a very relaxed set, opening with the seagull-assisted “Blowing (Seat Of The Soul)” before moving into the hazy electro chiller “Gentle Breeze.” The title pretty much sets the scene – nothing Takaki makes here is particularly rough, the beats relaxed and often joined by samples of birds (and what sounds like ticking clocks on “Sun Garden”). Get it here, or listen below.