Sunday, February 3, 2008

Opitope - Hau (Spekk)

Next month, I am going on vacation; and in preparation for my relaxation on the beach I am selecting the albums that will take me beyond the waves and the sun. Opitope's debut Hau, released on Nao Sigimoto's Tokyo based label, Spekk, is already at the top of that list. In their minimal ambient soundscapes, the Opitope duo, consisting of Tomoyoshi Date and Chihei Hatakeyama, design an album which cycles through the never ending period of seasons, attempting to express the feeling of sorrow that comes with any ending, eventually evolving into hope. Hatakeyama has previously released on Chicago based Kranky label with his experimental ambient album, Minima Moralia. Hau is an emotional piece which swirls with pads and bells around the field recordings, faint melodies, and a symmetrical structure; the sound reminds me of a process of nature unfolding its beauty to a patient observer. I am looking forward to absorbing this beautiful music in a more natural environment. Recommended if you enjoy Hammock and Library Tapes.

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