Pre-order of Infinite Mirrors: The Lost Latin American Tapes, Vol. 1 & 2. You get 9 tracks now (streaming via the free Bandcamp app and also available as a high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more), plus the complete album the moment it’s released.
XIII (w/ Bárbara Lázara, Natalia Perez Turner, Alexander Bruck & Martín López)
In 2015, after presenting in a festival in Merida, the japanese psych heavy-weight Kawabata Makoto landed in Mexico City for the first time in several years. Right before his first concert in a while, the underground forces gathered for the possibility of something extreme: like most music touched by this guitarist, sonic antenna and japanese improvisation wizard, he encountered a growing experimental music panorama in Mexico. Like all legendary stories, these recordings were long lost hidden gems that only ever sounded for one or two times in listening sessions (like Acid Mothers Day celebrated in Mexico, in 2016) and otherwise kept as a secret.
In the DIY spirit, there were two or three main sections to these recordings: with a modest setup and a little support in engineering, an interesting cast of mexican avantgarde musicians gathered and provided diverse sonic palettes to the psychedelic guitar of Kawabata Makoto.
This resulted in over 2 hours of spacey, anarchic and cathartic material that was centered on electroacoustic and dissonant dialogues in the improvisation realm, like an abyss of infinite circles exploring extended techniques, glissandos and sounds from mexican contemporary musicians like Alexander Bruck, Wilfrido Terrazas and Natalia Perez Turner, who gave life to the acoustic side of this recordings.
A material rich in symbols, also the first part of the recording was full of subtle details portrayed in spontaneous moments interpreted by other guests, like live-coding pioneer Hernani Villaseñor and electronic artist Javier Lara; yet for the second session, vocal performers Rodrigo Ambriz and Bárbara Lázara added a raw touch to the spirit of the improvisations, and summing percussions were young drummer Martín López, who teamed with free jazz veteran Gabriel Lauber; in order to capture a devastating and yet captivating equation that united japanese psych with mexican experimental music.
This live album is a full body of work, colorful inspiration and challenging sounds for psychedelic souls, extreme music heads, visual artists and synesthetic listeners alike. The registration resulted not in one, but two Volumes, of what could be Kawabata Makoto’s very first Latin-American recordings, creating a double album yet also mirroring a synergy between japanese psychedelia with the emerging experimental soundscape from Mexico at the time.
For 2023, Otono gathers the original “Latin American Tapes” for the first time mastered with analogue equipment in Andalucía, Spain, by a mexican sound engineer and artist, adding extra warmness and a broader sound dynamic range to the raw sounds. The two volumes of the mythical long lost japanese/mexican records, see light after almost a decade.
The abyss of infinite mirrors, is actually a metaphor and collection of those instants, frozen in time like memorable musical moments that re-sparked from these especially chaotic and magical sessions: the lost mexican tapes are now out like an intense treasure, thirsty to be rediscovered by old and new listeners.
Artwork cover illustration: Horse
Digital & booklet artwork: Canek Zapata
Design & additional artwork: Diego Madero
Curated by: Luis Clériga for Otono in Mexico City
Recorded by: Pau Olea, Dan H. & Vallone (electronic parts in Paramo)
Additional recording by: Kai Kraatz (improv parts in CCD)
Mixed by: Diego Madero.
Mastered by: Art Uro (Arthropoda, Andalucía)
OTONO thanks: Kawabata Makoto, Kai Kraatz, Gabriel Santamarina, Florencia Diaz, Art Uro, Gerardo Alejos, the Festival Cha'ak'ab Paaxil team, Katsuyoshi Kou, the Multiple Tap team & all the artists and crew for their support.