Paul Knowles – “Odosan”


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I asked Paul if he would submit an album of his field recordings to my label. Paul had the good fortune to have spent some time in Japan previously and he dug through the recordings procured from that time.

What I did not expect was an album of such beauty. As someone who has never been to Japan, I was immediately immersed into a representation of their culture. This album is an assault. The album, Odosan, starts with a walk through a busy Tokyo street (complete with a Girl Band playing on a massive sound system) and has snippets of everyday Japanese life that to me – as someone who has yet to visit Japan – I could not comprehend. With this album I was both lost & enamoured. Tokyo life seems like an assault on the senses judging by these recordings. Neon signs and Geisha girls come to mind.

The standard of these recording means that this is not an idle facsimile of the original. Paul used his ZOOM H1 to the fullest of it’s functions and got some good recordings – there is, for instance, very little wind rumble.

I had pressed Paul to see if he wanted to write a bit about the album. However, we met up for a beer three days ago and he said that if you had to explain all you did to the point where it was no longer enjoyable and organic it lost it’s point. Academia had taken the fun out of creative shenanigans for Paul, but, as he stated, he is finding his feet again. Paul Daniel Knowles has started to create art for the fun of it once again – however, with this album he has set his own benchmark very high.

The photograph used in the album cover is one taken by Paul, himself, in Tokyo.

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