Musically, Kodomo (aka Chris Child) is vibrant and versatile, influenced by classic IDM and golden era Warp Records as much as bottom heavy dub, classical minimalism, and warm 80’s synths. His new album Patterns & Light, out July 22nd, is an evolution of a recent two-year period where he sampled classical records found in flea markets and sidewalk sales of his new home of Brooklyn, NY. These influences create soaring soundscapes that fly in similar orbits as contemporaries Kwes, Four Tet, Clint Mansell and Clark, while simultaneously drawing lines to influences like Vangelis, Orbital, and Cabaret Voltaire. Kodomo will be putting these influences as well as much of the new Patterns & Light material on display on July 29th at Glasslands in Brooklyn, for his album release show with locals Kodachrome also on the bill.
Speaking of his contemporaries, Kodomo has followed up his recent “Orange Ocean” single with a pair of notable remixes. Vancouver ambient producer Loscil strips the track to it’s bare bones for maximum headspace and recent Moderat tour mate Anstam provides an “Orange Ocean” remix with an epic build up before a stutterning finish.
Most of the sampling on the album consists of small fragments of said classical pieces Child deliberately chose, with the opening of “Mind Like a Diamond” referencing Bach before shapeshifting into an epic balance of synths and beats. “Impromptu,” similarly, has a rippling piano loop that references Schubert. Elsewhere, Patterns & Light reflects a more modern hue. In addition to the aformentioned pitter patter of “Red Giant,” “Orange Ocean” exhales in more methodical, ambient breaths. This is the first time Kodomo has featured vocals in songs as well, highlighted by collaborations with Melissa Kaplan (Universal Hall Pass), Sasha Lazard, and John Hogg (Kassini).
Inspired by pieces from Bach, Schubert, Debussy, and Chopin, Kodomo examines how these classics can be re-contextualized, having sampled, stretched, and dissected their often unnoticed and most subtle parts. On Patterns & Light, Child samples the music of these classical composers directly from vinyl, processing and re-processing them into an unrecognizable state while insuring the new sounds retained a distinct harmonic structure. The samples were fed through various software processing programs and analog gear, generating new sounds, patterns, and ideas from which elements for a track would manifest itself.
Child’s upbringing in 1980’s Tokyo was an intense period of growth for Japan, and the effects on him were countless. Attending the Technology EXPO 1985 served as a futuristic counterpoint to a childhood filled with classical piano lessons as a kid living in Japan for 8 years. In fact, the meaning of the moniker Kodomo is “child” in Japanese. Flash forward to a high school life in Seoul, Korea that consisted of tape recorder and drum machine experiments, to a discovery of Autechre’s Incunabula while in college, and the synthesis of Kodomo’s musical outlook begins to come into focus.
Kodomo approaches each album and project with the intention of moving in a new direction, inspired by original processes and ideas.
Patterns & Light
Out July 22nd, 2014
Mind Like a Diamond
Time Lapse 2
The Holographic Principle
Losing Your Way (Kodomo Remix)