Immersive soundscapes to get lost in.
Tradition and the avant-garde are split across Shinshunfu's two sides. The first is a gorgeous, plaintive folk song by Amada, composed in the mid-'50s. Crystalline, plucked koto strings tumble past one another before a vocal, taiko drum and glistening shō make the composition more song-like. Ken's rework renders the original unrecognisable—only the taiko and occasional koto reappear. Instead, the listener is greeted with digitised bird cheeps, chiming bells and flat, atonal synths that build to a sticky, oscillating crescendo. While the playful idiosyncrasies of Ken's previous work remain, they're given fresh clarity in opposition to Amada's more traditional sounds. This is a jumbled-up sonic history. Opening with the sound of running water—a persistent motif throughout his work—before submerging the listener in its cool bubbles, Ken's music has never felt more immersive.