The latest Shigeto album is possibly his best release to date. His trademark blend of ambient melodies, funk and hip hop beats, and electronica-infleunced sampling really meshes together with perfection. Some of these tracks could be described as hip hop instrumentals, some as jazzy and funky ambient numbers, but as a whole, this album best belongs in the ambient electronica bag.
Available from Amazon and iTunes, amongst other stores, Lineage, as the name suggests, is an ode to this mans roots. Zach ‘Shigeto’ Saginaw uses his middle name for this particular artist moniker, but it is also his Grandfathers name, and his Great-Grandfathers name too. His Great-Grandfather is further referenced in the artwork for this release, with his Hiroshima house pictured in 1916 on the front cover. The back cover is a still of his Great-Grandfather, Shigeto Ohmura, at the Amache Internment Camp in Grenada, Colorado after his family was transferred from Tule Lake Internment Camp. When war broke out between Japan and the United States, many Japanese immigrants were interred without trial in these work camps, by the US government, including this artists forefathers.
But this album goes further than referencing Shigeto’s relatives, and past, in the artwork and artist moniker, the tracks themselves are purported, by Shigeto, to represent his feelings towards those within his lineage, and his experiences whilst growing up surrounded by by his own family. They may be instrumentals, but with that knowledge, listen to the album, and I guarantee you will understand something about the closeness of this family. I have certainly convinced myself that I do!
There is depth in all of the tracks, with a great sense of space too. A lot of different instruments make mini-appearances, developing the entire album into a really detailed and interesting listen. You never know whats coming next, and there is no actual template to the instruments used by this artist, which is one of my favourite aspects of the electronica genre. Of the two tracks available for free download, ‘Lineage’ is a glitchy breakbeat number that feels like a continual positive spiral, and ‘Huron River Drive’ is another breaky number, with beautiful chimes and claps adding some great background atmosphere to sublime key work. ‘Field Trip’ and ‘Soaring’ are my other favourites from this epic release.
Shigeto - Huron River Drive
Shigeto - Lineage
This release is out on Ghostly International.