Minamata ‎– Fukushima

Minamata ‎– Fukushima CD Force Majeure 2017

This is a slightly older CD and from a French project whose roots and activity extend all the way back to the mid-1980’s. In then being well aware of the project by name, this is however is my first proper introduction to the music of Minamata, so I can offer little in the way of comparisons to how this differs from or continues on with their earlier sonic approach.

On Fukushima it contains four freeform tracks of a cinematic experimental-industrial style that spans a runtime of around 45-minutes. Opening track tepKO commences with thick waves of semi-melodies sweeping tones blend and interweave, creating a stormy and roiling mass of sound over its nine-minute span. The second track at(H)oM commences with more subtlety but soon gives rise to calamitous crashing elements, thick melodious drones, and a disembodied voice cutting through the tonal mass. Charting more contemplative atmospherics, tsunaminamata features a sparse soundscape of panning and sweeping textures and angst-driven vocals, which shifts mid-track with rapidly buildings sonic peaks, and which metaphorically is like the swamping of land by continual tsunami waves. The final of the four tracks is eKlips, and is the longest track at 22 minutes. While not significantly different from the earlier material, does contain more direct song structures with segments of incessant pounding beat, radioactive blasting noise, dour cinematic synth melodies, and anguished vocalisations.

With the cover imagery on the six-panel digi-sleeve, as well as track titles, it is obvious this has been inspired by the Fukushima nuclear disaster of 2011. Consequently, the album plays out as a rather decent experimental-industrial soundtrack of sorts to the tragic events which unfolded. Worthy of attention and will certainly see me further investigating Minamata’s back catalogue.

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