PREMIERE: Japanese Psych Innovators Kikagaku Moyo Unveil “Melted Crystal”
From their forthcoming third record, House in the Tall Grass.
Tokyo’s Kikagaku Moyo have been quietly working on their brand of psychedelic music since their 2013 self-titled debut. It’s a style that has little in common with the navel-gazing busy-ness to which guitar-based psych often falls prey. The band’s name translates to “geometric patterns,” and it’s hard to think of a more apt descriptor: their music seems to twirl and reveal its facets at the whim of some soft force.
That’s the operating principle behind “Melted Crystal,” which we’re happy to be premiering this afternoon. The cut is taken from House in the Tall Grass, the band’s third full-length, which is out May 13 via Guruguru Brain. “I wasn’t inspired by anything in particular,” bassist Kotsu Guy says of the song. “I was just playing the guitar one day and the notes flowed from my fingers naturally. Perhaps I was subconsciously influenced by Popol Vuh and acid folk songs, because I was listening to that a lot at the time. I like to make sounds that have never been heard before by layering different guitar phrases. I like doing it that way because if it turns out well, each phrase melts into each other and becomes one. That’’s how I came up with the name ‘Melted Crystal.’”
True to Guy’s inspiration, the song’s phrases elide into one another patiently, with pitters of tom and lightly plucked sitar pointillizing the background. And while there is no dramatic build, no crashing conclusion, that hardly seems like the point. “Melted Crystal” is music that requests—and rewards—your quiet contemplation. Give a listen below.
House in the Tall Grass track list
“Old Snow, White Sun”
House in the Tall Grass is out May 13 via Guruguru Brain.