Ok ... its been sometime since anything from the shibuya stable of artists that has inspired me. Gone are the heady days of the happy charm dance stylings of P5 and their ilk. Konishi Yasuhara seems to have settled into one singular groove ... more tom toms more bongos more shrieking horns. Everyone has morphed into cheesy electroclash meanderings ... or worse ... retreated into the pseudo intellectualisms of deep house and dub.
One artist continues to push the envelope in terms of mood and styling ... Kahimi Karie. Her latest album "It's Here", coming 4 years after the last one, is fantastically produced and its the aural equivalent of a warm bath with candles as a storm lashes outside against the window. Yes her voice is twee, and its all in breathy japanese pallated french ... but its beautiful despite its failings ... and I'm pretty sure this is the album Charlotte Gainsbourg had in her head for her sophomore effort.
This is not for everybody, and not for everytime ... you need to be in the mood ... but on those quiet nights of contemplation, glass of wine in hand, mobile phone on silent, this is the perfect accompaniment. Go on be daring ... try something a little different.
I can't find anything on the old tube from this newie, so I'm leaving you with 2 flavours of Kahimi - first the Momus heavy kitsch of One Thousand 20th Century Chairs taken from K.K.K.K.K (my first recommendation) and the second is the first track off 2003's Trapeziste album (my other recommendation).
Addm: Finally something on Youtube - Enjoy (12th Aug 2010)
And if you're feeling extra daring ... check out Shiina Ringo. She deserves a post all of her own. So till then, here's a taster or two.