Japanese duo IKEBANA recently released their latest album ‘when you arrive there’, showing the world that lo-fi doesn’t need to be a wall of fuzzy noise. Their brand of music is as simplistic and pretty as their namesake – the Japanese art of ikebana (“living flowers” or simply “flower arranging”) is notoriously minimalist and can be starkly beautiful. And it’s that stark beauty that sets the pair’s dreamgaze space songs apart from the rest – no wonder people want to remix them.
This particular remix of Alone, a collaborative effort from Sigh Society (the solo project of Tokyo DJ/producer Kiyoshi Hazemoto) and Sakai Masayuki, really does wonders to the original – an aching cycle of lonely guitar chords and pure melodies. It’s minimalistic, with both remixers clearly understanding the power of empty space as bursts of traditional noises – shakuhachi (Japanese flute), xylophone and mountain-retreat percussion – are given plenty of room to breathe. Overall, it’s a soothing atmosphere that sets you adrift in your own imagination.