Shinkei/Luigi Turra – YU – CD – NVO

The duo of Shinkei and Turra have garnered acceptance and adulation from the minimalist/microsound community with a string of epic 8cm releases on their own Koyuki-Sound label. Koyuki, is an imprint dedicated to small editions, whose influence has nevertheless extended out into a global network, bringing them not only a discerning audience, but also a ready made fan base for their own releases. NVO have seen fit to release YU, their debut collaborative piece for the influential Viennese label.

The epically reduced cover (the first near-white cover for NVO) is more than a hint at what is presented on the disc contained therein, designed by Turra, it graphically represents the very soul of this piece, maintaining an effortless elegance and poise, drawing us into their sound world.

The CD opens with WA – with barely a whisper..a glow of warmth emanating from a stark, silent void, elongated silences scattered with creaks and rumblings that sound like an old boat, gently swaying in a breeze. Using perpetual silences as a kind of elegant punctuation, the duo take us on a journey, that is distinctly reminiscent of a Zen-like garden of delights..long, almost surreal blank spaces, occasionally occupied with the twitter of birds, distorted fragments of speech, or a flurry of Buddhist chant, as on KARESANSUI. Here and there, we emerge into tracts of warm tonalism, but with the ever-present field recordings, and perhaps even a shaving of Japanese instrumentation, like bells, flutes, or gongs. NAGOYA KOEN takes a more oblique approach, with slices of field recording from Japanese children at play, and tracts of Japanese radio, maybe, or possibly a glimpse of somebody’s living space? Nevertheless, it is an intimate, enchanting piece. YU unmistakably takes aural cues from Zen, and Japanese culture, and wears that badge proudly, as we are walked through a series of scenes from a film yet to be effortlessly beautiful and intelligently constructed take on minimalism. Where other artists make their minimalism cold and somewhat remote, the artists here inject their work with a rare humanity, and spiritual calm. This is perhaps one of the most elegantly constructed sound works I’ve encountered from the duo so far, and will remain in my player for some time, as I allow it’s gentle sonic caresses to envelop me, and take me on a sublime journey as only Shinkei & Turra can. Absolutely essential. BGN



About whiteline1

WHITE_LINE was set up three years ago, in order to play and promote the work of artists and musicians working under the banner of "minimalism", in all its many guises. This has led to a regular and highly successful mix slot on the Garden of Earthly Delights radio show in the UK, and guest appearances on Resonance FM (frequenzen show). We now aim to extend the remit of the mix slots by reviewing (as often as possible) material that encapsulates and crystallises the minimalist ethic, and hopefully we'll be leading artists and audiences alike towards a deeper appreciation of this and other marginalised genres. I welcome your comments, and criticisms, and would love to hear from labels and artists who would like their work showcased on the show, or reviewed here. We regret that due to time constraints, we cannot review everything that is sent to us, but will endeavour to give exceptional work an "honourable mention" at the very least, and links to quality sites that we think worthy of mentioning. I am trying to support labels and artists as much as possible by promoting their work, not least because I am a stereotypical "struggling artist" myself, but also because there are so few younger artists entering this particular scene, and there is a danger of it becoming the sole domain of a handful of forty somethings who really ought to be doing something better with their time! Having worked for most of the more reputable underground magazines in the early 90's, I was never afforded the luxury of taking time and care over reviews, as deadlines and column space were always hanging like the sword of Damocles over me. With WHITE_LINE, I have the luxury of being able to review when I have time, and I am receptive to a particular mood, and hopefully this will reflect in the quality and length of some of the reviews. If you like what you see, please link to me to encourage more traffic through the site, and cross promote whatever is happening out there. Address for promotional material: 45 Drovers Walk Spring Park, Kingsthorpe Northampton NN2 8BB UK

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