High quality quietness from 0 here, an ensemble featuring Sylvain Chauveau. He wrote all the music on Umarete Wa Mita Keredo to accompany a silent Ozu film, which I can imagine being a perfect fit. Entirely acoustic, these pieces are delicate melodic constructions. Released by the Japanese label Flau.
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7/10 Robin Staff review, 25 November 2015
Ominous chillers Flau are the label behind ‘Umarete Wa Mita Keredo’, so set an alarm for twilit and twinkling ambience. In the mists of this record’s sparsely framed compositions lies the one and only Sylvain Chauveau, a musician with a twin affections for neo-classical and pastoral folk music. Fresh from a reissue of Depeche Mode covers (it’s important to indulge one’s self), he offers this collection with smugly named band 0, a group whose work was intended to score a silent film.
Disregarding the band’s egg-based fantasies, this record is a gorgeous, autumnal work that sets atmosphere and glides along to it. Nearly every instrument feels decorative rather than narrative, with the flutes playing short, immediate figures rather than developing into proper melodies. Bringing to mind a less technically minded James Blackshaw, the guitars are plucked to sound subliminal, making up the scenery without asking you to pay attention to it. Call it descriptive folk music: it places you in a scene and builds it around you.
For those who’d kinda appreciate it if the world could come to a halt for a little while, ‘Umarete’ is perfect; at times it drops off from its arrangements completely -- as on “Nijuyu”, where flute plays solo, shyly fading into silence -- while the fullest the arrangements get is a duet of guitar, flute and glockenspiel. It’s like a music lesson at school where everyone’s playing the quiet game.
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