The 3rd tapestry woven by Subaltern Records this decade is the ‘Cronauer’ EP, a 5-track plate from new-signee, Kodama, featuring Vantage Records founder, LX One. Sensitive to the current climate, the Barcelona-based producer decorates his bassweight with lush, ambient textures and dreamy piano riffs.
Gentle waterfalls, secret pathways and drifting sakura tie this EP together. Although, the collaborative title-track, ‘Cronauer’, shows that this Japanese garden, cultivated in Catalonia, can be as brutal at night as it is beautiful in the day. Off-kilter chimes tip-toe through twisting corridors in ‘Piranha Plant’, while ‘Dorsia’ distorts both melody-driving bells and forceful 808’s alike.
Italian vocalist, Shenza, joins Kodama’s Ghibli-esque clouds of piano in ‘Il Tempo è Oro’ for a hip-hop gilded low-ride through 140. Setting the sun on the ‘Cronauer’ EP, ‘Crookshanks’ sifts as a Sunday soundtrack, reminiscent of distant koto moments from Satoshi Ashikawa’s ‘Still Way‘ (Wave Notation 2).
Despite everything that’s happened this year, Kodama has been busy mastering, releasing music and recording guest mixes. Perhaps in recognition of their forthcoming collaboration, LX One featured Kodama on his Subtle FM radio show (3rd Friday of each month, 6-7pm) back in May. Around the same time, BunZero invited Kodama onto his FOB show on Sub FM (Thursdays fortnightly, 6-8pm).
Carrying the momentum from his releases on Eat My Beat and Encrypted Audio last year, Kodama has joined Rarefied on the ‘no one’s out of time‘ compilation EP featuring Soukah, Pharma, Sibla, Mob Killa and Arkham Sound. Those Rarefied atmospheres seep into the spiderweb’s morning dew of his forthcoming Subaltern Records release.
He’s pushed the boat out further in a collaboration with the up-and-coming steppas and 140 mystic, Mungk, in a self-released EP titled ‘Let’s Visit‘, where all the proceeds go to the Black Lives Matter fund.
Rounding off the summer (where did all the time go?) with the ‘Cronauer’ EP, a shimmering 5-track vinyl release on Subaltern Records, seems an appropriate way to crown this year’s pearl necklace of achievements for Kodama.