Thursday 6 June 2013


Ugh. I just wrote a whole bunch of stuff and then somehow pasted over it with other stuff that had nothing to do with what I'd already written and there was no way to get it back - not even ctrl+z would help. Anyway, what I wrote was basically that we were going on another journey into the strange but wonderful world of New Generation. If you don't know, I'm obsessing about this a bit lately - an artist collective headed up by SAINT PEPSI, all with a kinda style that mixes retro beats and sounds with modern production techniques and other bits and bobs.

This time we are taking a no-border-no-culture trip to Japan - not that it particularly matters where an artist comes from. New Generation seem to have figured that much out, but I don't think it's a direct result of how the internet is - it is not yet a complete whole living and breathing mecha-organism, definitely not. Instead, New Generation seem to take their cues more from their thoughts and ideals for how music should be shared, using what tools are available rather than pushing absolutely brand new methods. Either way, whatever, nice idea I think.

So anyway we're in Japan (I think but god knows I could be wrong) for 'OGASAWARA' by the truly bizarrely named VISAプリペイド (that's VISA PREPAID). I, well, listen to it yo.

Beginning with the sound of what may well be rain, the rest of 'OGASAWARA' comes on in just as fluid and smooth a style. There is heavy, rumbling bass, like funk thunder cracking over hilltops. Instead of a snare to sit beside the thudding kick, there is a steady and very watery drip, as of a drip in a remote cave or something. Some stringed instrument sound, like an low-tuned koto, floats above everything like a slow-moving cloud, giving the chill-funk a touch of unearthly, spiritual romance.

It's not a conventional song, that's for sure - especially as the disembodied vocals begin to pour in gently towards the end of the song. However, although it isn't conventional, it sure does cleanse the brain - a kind of deep chill I guess. Btw Ogasawara is a village on one of the Bonin Islands (south of Tokyo) in Japan. VISAプリペイド has an album coming out at the start of July called スムーズOCEANS (SMOOTH OCEANS) and it will probably be very chilled, slow, funky, retro, lo-fi and strange, just as this one was. Like it or not, it's different.

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Listen to VISAプリペイド on SoundCloud
Check VISAプリペイド on Tumblr
Like VISAプリペイド on Facebook

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