Shuta Hasunuma - Shuta Hasunuma
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Shuta Hasunuma
Shuta Hasunuma

A combination of city scape field recordings, filtered electronics, and some random played instrumentation, the debut from Japanese artist Shuta Hasunuma plays out like some sort of half-remembered dream. Imagine falling asleep on a bench in the downtown of a city and having the half-awake and half-remembered moments and sounds filtered down into just over forty minutes of music. The result may sound very similar to this release (and you won't have to lose your wallet in the process).

There's a lot of music being created like this, and Hasunuma doesn't do a lot to really distinguish himself throughout the twelve song effort. "Departure" opens the release with some airport chatter that dissolves into slightly disconcerting electronic tones, while "Green Repair" mingles some stuttering acoustic guitar with ringing electronic pings, whistling, and chimes for what turns out to be one of the best tracks on the entire release. With nearly the perfect mixture of organic and electronic, the track plays some gurgling electronics off the meandering guitar notes while warm drones play out almost perfectly in the background.

Unfortunately, a large part of the rest of the release doesn't play out as successfully. The middle section of the release is largely dominated by very short tracks (three minutes or under) that introduce elements that simply aren't developed as fully. "Ikumono" again mixes some acoustic guitar with some fuzzy, droning layers, but the track ends just as it sounds like it's starting to go somewhere. "Hammock" is even more frustrating, as bird samples play out over random eastern percussion that just sort of wanders randomly for about three minutes.

The latter section of the album is a little more successful, as "Prelude" takes contemplative, but pretty piano figures and mixes them with soft layers of static and squiggling electronics that effectively take some of the seriousness out of the piece. "Eurikago Afternoon" closes the release with the most effective use of acoustic guitar on the album, as an ascending melody climbs alongside some spoken-word samples, banjo, chimes, and filtered electronics for something that reminds one a bit of The Books. As a whole, this debut from Hasunuma is nice enough, but doesn't really offer a lot to distinguish itself from the myriad of other releases in the same sort of style.

rating: 5.7510
Aaron Coleman 2006-11-23 20:14:08