KOJI ASANO – Sant Cugat Del Vallès

Solstice

Sant Cugat Del Vallès is both the Catalan town that inspired this music and the name of the 60th (!) album by Japanese composer Koji Asano, whose output we had last analyzed four years ago. Throughout his consistent release schedule, Asano keeps maintaining a level of proficiency inversely proportional to the lack of mentions from the dignitaries of newfangled taste. Most probably, coherence and autonomy are considered unforgivable sins by the cliques.

The work consists of a single piece lasting circa 66 minutes; in a way, we could describe it as a long threnody bathed in distortion. The source – as per Asano’s trademark approach – is practically unidentifiable, completely transmuted by overdriven interferences designed to split the harmonic content into thousands of variously shaped shards. And yet, distinct melodies regularly emerge from the apparent mayhem: isolated at times, or else stratified in abnormal masses like expanded chemtrails giving shades of grey to a previously blue sky. This goes on uninterruptedly, except a fleeting pause shortly after the fortieth minute or so. The ultimate wake-up comes abruptly, as to remind us that this was only a harsh particle of that wordless vastness that millions of idiots still pretend to dissertate about through the diminutive volume of a sadly human brain.

My lone advice is: forget the physical issues related to the act of listening. It doesn’t matter if you’re sitting on a chair, sprawled on a couch, or walking around the room; just lend yourselves to the acoustic exhalations of this creature, at the same time mind-lulling and intoxicating. Asano is not keen on the “explanation” of vibrational events that, more often than not, depend on stochastic laws. Exactly as birth and death – but please don’t tell this to the deluded rabbles.

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