Inspired by years-old uncertainty reignited by the pandemic, Kaisaku leaves us in thoughtful silence with his latest six-track EP ‘Restless’.
Asking if I love this EP would be like asking if the sun rises every morning. Kaisaku has always been a favorite artist of mine, and with the deep personal message behind this work, I’m left repeating this EP over and over.
Before we go any further, lets hear what this album is all about.
“I’d say in recent years, I’ve been experiencing a lot of feelings connected to doubt and uncertainty in my personal life, which stem from before the pandemic. I do think when I was in quarantine, I was dwelling on those feelings a lot more, since I’d be spending a lot more time indoors and being physically away from people. At this time, I began creating a lot of ambient pieces in my past time as a sort of emotional outlet, which is something I don’t normally do. I never really intended to release a new ambient project from doing this, but I eventually had a few pieces that I thought were worth sharing which led me to release this EP.”
Take a listen through the album as we dive in.
Through the Heavens
We open up with ‘a haze within the mirror‘, a beautiful atmospheric piece that continues to build through most of the track’s life. The main movement in the piece is a sub line that moves up and down over three notes the entire time, slowly growing louder until it’s the center piece in the crescendo three minutes in. The track gives me a sort of ethereal trudging vibe, but maybe that’s just he space sci-fi I’ve been reading recently. Regardless, this piece feels like a trudge through the heavens, a beautiful yet arduous task.
Next, we come to ‘wind, chime in‘ which I just love. The title and the track itself are perfectly clever, you’ll immediately notice how the wind chimes are a focal point in the song and the whole track just feels airy and flowing. So yes wind, chime in! We want to hear all you have to tell us. I can’t wait till the weather warms up and I can sit on my back porch listening to this, it feels like the perfect use for a quarantine-born song determined to translate the wind’s words for us.
‘in the meantime‘ comes next for us, and this one is a bit more of an experimental soundscape. Just a tad off-putting with its listless tone and melody and more abrasive background ambience, it feels less hopeful. The track seems to want you to fade away with its long reverberations. I’m sure we all felt listless during the midst of the pandemic, and that’s the idea I get when listening. Still, this is a beautiful track and those who know me know I love the slightly strange.
“I was just in the mood to make some sounds, likely subconsciously motivated by the aforementioned feelings that I’ve been going through. All the songs on “restless” were actually made in early 2022. On these specific pieces, I’ve been experimenting a bit more with ambient sound design. I ended up really liking these specific pieces a lot, enough to make me want to share them publicly.”
The fourth track, ‘from the pond, a memory emerged‘ is again a perfect title. Bubbly, low-passed arpeggios slowly emerge from the introduction, softened by the silky pads, and continue to bounce back and forth between our right and left ears. This is one of the pieces I could sleep to. Dreaming amidst the shimmering tones and grasping at the memories that animate my sleep. I am continually stunned by this piece each time I come back for a listen.
As we near the end, we hear the sister track to track four: ‘forever the ripples will echo.” This track mirrors the last as the ripples from the emerged memory travel across the pond, endlessly. The trickled arpeggios continue to bless our ears as gentle sub-bass and synths begin to come into the picture and sing a longing tune. Longing to continue, longing to be express, and longing to be heard anyone they can find.
Finally, we find relief. We find track six, ‘relief, then nothing.’ This track continues the theme of natural background ambience and thick atmospheric tones, but features a solid backbone of piano. I’m not sure if it’s intentional but to me the piano seems to represent that relief. The entire EP is based upon fluid and sometimes formless atmospheres, but has now found relief in the structure of the bright and confident piano. We can rest now, ride upon the strong words of the piano. All is well, all is finished.
Release date and streaming
The EP was released on January 13th and is available for both download and streaming. Enjoy via a plethora of platforms including Bandcamp, Spotify, Apple Music, Youtube, and Soundcloud.