The two releases follow the label's widely-loved reissue of Hiroshi Yoshimura's Music For Nine Post Cards.
The two records from the Portland label, run by Visible Cloaks' Spencer Doran and Maxwell August Croy, follow the 2017 reissue of Hiroshi Yoshimura Music For Nine Post Cards as well as the Doran-curated Japanese ambient and environmental compilation, Kankyō Ongaku: Japanese Ambient, Environmental & New Age Music 1980-1990, both of which received the RA-recommends stamp.
"[The Inoyama Land and Sugaya] collections offer an even deeper dive into the long-hidden lineage of Japanese ambient/environmental music that is now being discovered and celebrated outside of Japan," the press release reads.
First up is Inoyama Land's Commissions: 1977-2000. The duo of Makoto Inoue and Yasushi Yamashita have been making music for four decades. Following the release of their valuable, Haruomi Hosono-produced 1983 album, Danzindan-Pojidon, the duo got involved with "the budding environmental music business that was taking shape in Tokyo during the development boom of the asset bubble," explains Empire Of Signs. The double-LP Commissions: 1977-2000 includes music written for the Kankaku (Sense) Museum in Miyagi, an exhibit of slime molds at the National Museum of Nature and Science, a 1977 stage performance called Collecting Net, as well as their score for a Tokyo re-staging of Richard Foreman's Egyptology.
Masahiro Sugaya, meanwhile, is almost completely unknown outside of Japan (though he, as well as Inoyama Land, appeared on Kankyō Ongaku). Horizon, Volume 1 consists of music Sugaya made in the '80s for experimental theater productions using computers, synthesizers and samplers. The Empire Of Signs set marks the first time these works have been released outside of Japan.
Listen to Inoyama Land's "Hair Air."
Listen to Masahiro Sugaya's "Future Green."
Inoyama Land - Commissions: 1977-2000
01. Hair Air
03. Soushiyou To Shiteiru
05. Aa Egypto
08. Fairy Tale
11. Ougon No Sara
12. Candy Floss
13. Watashikara Ubawanaide
14. Anatano Yushoku No Tameni
15. Candy (Alt.)
16. Sekai No Owari
Masahiro Sugaya - Horizon, Volume 1
01. Horizon (Intro)
02. Future Green
03. Afternoon Of The Appearing Fish
04. Grain Of Sand By The Sea
05. Straight Line Floating In The Sky
06. Wind Conversation
07. Until The End Of The World
08. Horizon (Outro)
Empire Of Signs will release Commissions: 1977-2000 on September 20th and Horizon, Volume 1 on October 11th, 2019.