A pure journey inward into the headspace of an artist, that reveals his gaze at the earth-ly zones he walks in: “Song for Joni”, the new album by Japanese musician Shunji Mori, brings pure natural music full of artificial nuances who create in conversation with ana-logue tones a new kind of musical nature, loaded with vibrant seasons, unknown to us, the unwise humans. moreover, the album is a fine continuation of Japan’s rich ambient leaning music traditions, carrying them into Lorren Connor’s like pending guitar galaxies.
In the 1990s Tokyo based Mori was part of the trip hop, nu-jazz, deep house, and down-tempo duo natural calamity, releasing a string of albums and EP’s on labels like legend-ary London based imprint Nuphonic, Japanese Idyllic Records or Down 2 Earth Record-ings.
In 2003 he launched the instrumental guitar duo Gabby & Lopez with his buddy Masayuki Ishii. Together they created three albums and performed live. Additionally, Mori plays improvisational concerts with Japanese musician, multi-instrumentalist, and stage direc-tor Daiho Soga and finds time to invent his very own, charismatic guitar music.
His solo work now finally gets introduced with a full-length album for Studio Mule, con-sisting of recent and a decade ago compositions, all merely recorded with the electric guitar, pedals, and field recordings.
In the center of “Song for Joni” is the guitar, spreading longing, drifting melodies. Free floating, yet deeply felt compositions, performed in an accurate journey music style. around the string notes, ambient landscapes soar and vanish.
In some moments, the guitar works like a slow-mo yacht rock lead, flying speed less over and under imaginative sonic clouds. Then, Mori’s music distributes psychedelic ef-fects in the tradition of krautrock legends like Günter Schickert, just without the echo fuzz.
Additionally, in warm vibrating seconds, his creations remind on the calm flashes in the musical work of English photographer, musician, and artist designer Steve Hiett, while Mori’s ambient spheres come close to the magic vibe of records like “Pier & Loft” by his fellow countryman Hiroshi Yoshimura.
A mixture, that transports considerate listeners into the meditative world of Shunji Mori, a calm island of bliss, made for all those that follow the heedful path of life.