WaqWaq Kingdom is the pairing of Gameboy madman DJ Scotch Egg and other-worldly Japanese vocalist Kiki Hitomi of Black Chow and King Midas Sound. But it is nothing like you might expect, if anything it falls on the King Midas side of things. Shinsekai is driven by incredible world and tribal sampling, a trimba and heavy dub production, but is far from straight up.
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Very, very nice sounds now -- if you like electronic music shot through with bass, polyrhythms, arpeggiators and luscious vocals, that is -- from Waqwaq Kingdom… I didn’t know, either. They are: producer Shigeru Ishihara -- aka Brighton noise mentalist DJ Scotch Egg, also of Seefeel -- with drummer / percussionist Andrea Belfi (have you checked his sparkling ‘Alveare’ LP yet? You should!) and the deliciously ethereal vocals of Kiki Hitomi. Hitomi was last heard on her extraordinary solo record Karma No Kusari and before that, with King Midas Sound. Phew! Way too many facts to digest, so on with this record.
Right. The record’s sound is based on a platform of solid percussion delivered by the trimba, an instrument pioneered by Moondog, no less. Tribal rhythms and heavy bass underpin addictive grooves with an array of radiant electro sounds layered over the top. Add to that a liberal sprinkling of Hitomi’s voice and arrangements -- which on 'Koko Says', floats and flutters like a skylark -- and you have a wonderful, cohesive sound full of detail, oddball pop hooks and colour. So much colour and texture to this record. And bass. Dub bass. But most of all, I’m totally in love with the drums sounds. Especially on the frenetically-paced ‘Oh It’s Good’ and the more delicate ‘Bird’. Oh and the guitar on ‘I Would Like to Let You Go’.
For fans of adventurous dance and dub, I highly recommend this record.
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