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Yama Warashi

Crispy Moon

    Yoshino Shigihara came into 2019 needing a change. The Japanese artist had been based in Bristol ever since co-founding the now defunct Maloya-infuenced raucous psychedelia collective Zun Zun Egui. She then blossomed on her own across an EP and two albums of more meditative but no less territorially transcendent records as Yama Warashi. As in her music, though, Yoshino has always had a sense of wanderlust and it was perhaps no surprise that she’d eventually want to move again – this time to London.

    “Moving to London gave me the chance to work with more diverse musicians” Yoshino says. “And I wanted to be here too because of the high creative energy, the diversity of the music and art here and the people who live here.”

    The first material to come out of her relocation is a bold advancement of her sound, her third album Crispy Moon. Recorded at the Total Refreshment Centre in London with Kristian Claig Robinson, with most of the mixing coming from Hannes Plattmeire and mastering by Zun Zun Egui guitarist Stephen Kerrison, there are new contributing members, including Cathy Lucas of Vanishing Twin (with whom Yama toured with in 2021), Aletta Verwoerd on drums and Mermaid Chunky’s Moina Walker on sax. Compared to the more lo-fi, homespun feel of early releases such as Moon Zero and Moon Egg, there’s larger brush strokes at play, a bigger sound and an understated but self-assured grandeur.

    Much of the move to London and Yoshino’s experiences of being in the capital have made their way into the themes of the record. For Yoshino, though, while the lyrics are important, they’re also largely personal. The drive for her is to get across the universality of her music, to keep an open ear and absorb everything that she can before returning it back out into the world. Moving to London has only strengthened that for her, with new collaborators, fresh experiences and altered perspectives. Crispy Moon is the colourfully brilliant end result.


    TRACK LISTING

    Side A
    1. Makkuroi Mizu
    2. Dividual Individual
    3. Saku Saku
    4. Umi No Mon
    Side B
    1. Ha Ha No Uta
    2. Makai No Keyaku
    3. Dou Dou Meguri
    4. Yuru Yuru


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