Electronic music has replaced rock as the go-to “do it yourself” sound. Economics have played a heavy role in this – why spend hundreds if not thousands of dollars assembling a “traditional” band (guitars, drum, etc.) when a computer and some software can do pretty much the same stuff? Not to mention the possibilities electronic music holds – see the excess of interesting noises floating around blogs today, and compare that too the majority of indie-rock kicking around, most of which fails to standout from the crowd whatsoever. This rings true for Japan too, as evidenced by the electronic communities all over big cities like Tokyo and Osaka, the prior juxtaposing bedroom folks like everyone on CUZ ME PAIN with more colorful fare while the latter boasts the forward-thinking sounds of INNIT artists.
And this style keeps spreading. Chunli & Hikari hail from Fukuoka and state that they “make kyooot beats!” on their SoundCloud page. The bite-size play time could definitely be considered adorable – I’m picturing a little dog wearing a raincoat – yet the actual sounds could easily be another jutting branch coming out of the INNIT tree. “Sometimes I Sleep” and a few other beats the duo made incorporate jazzy touches similar to what Madegg and Seiho do, but whereas those two Kansai artists let those sonic details float in an ether, Chunli & Hikari tether their tracks to earthly reality, the chopped-up noises direct and rarely woozy. A song like “What I Really Wanted To Tell You” sounds more cloudy, glitchy digital touches interrupting the somber mood brought on by the piano and tape hiss. “ひかり- Awake In The Bed Remix” is just plain good, the duo bringing out a whole bunch of great sonic details, such as what sounds like a dentist drill working in reverse. Listen to two tracks below.
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