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Ikue Mori — Hex Kitchen

Ikue Mori — Hex Kitchen (May 23, 1995) {Tzadik}

Japan                       Ikue Mori — Hex Kitchen 
•♦•   もりいくえ
•♦•   Ikue Mori has been a key member of the downtown music scene since moving to New York from Tokyo in 1977.
•♦•   Ikue Mori creates some intriguing avantgarde music by utilizing samples and drum loops and creating fragmentary beats and melodies that vary from relaxed to chaotic. Most impressively is the way she harnesses this technique to create listenable songs. Indeed, Hex Kitchen is actually relatively accessible. Vocals appear periodically through the record, their simplicity juxtaposing nicely with the instrumentals. John Zorn was the executive producer of this record, and also played clarinet on it. 4.4

Born: 17 December 1953, Tokyo, Japan
Location: New York, NY
Genre: electronic, avant–garde, experimental
Album release: May 23, 1995
Record Label: Tzadik
Duration:      41:05  
01. Slush      2:40
02. Woke Up Aghast      3:17
03. Angler Fish      3:52
04. Shiver     3:11
05. Recipe      4:12
06. Loops      3:29
07. Kiss Of Fire      3:47
08. Eight Million Ways To Die      4:22
09. Clapper      2:50
10. Dau Miu      4:12
11. Hive      5:13
1995 Tzadik
•♦•   Ikue Mori vocals, drum machine, samples, producer
•♦•   John Zorn executive producer, clarinet
•♦•   Peter Wetherbee executive producer
•♦•   Brooks Williams engineer
•♦•   Mark Degliantoni engineer
•♦•   Allan Tucker mastering
•♦•   David Watson photography, bagpipes, guitar
•♦•    Toh Bandjan Publishing
•♦•    Mark De Gli Antoni Engineer
•♦•    Kato Hideki Bass
•♦•    Catherine Jauniaux Vocals
•♦•    Ikue Mori Design, Drum Machine, Drums, Producer, Sampling, Vocals
•♦•    David Newgarden Associate Producer
•♦•    Zeena Parkins Accordion, Electric Harp, Harp, Keyboards
•♦•    Hahn Rowe Bass, Guitar, Violin
•♦•    Jim Staley Trombone
•♦•    Kazunori Sugiyama Associate Producer
•♦•    Tomoyo T.L. Design Consultant
•♦•    Allan Tucker Mastering
•♦•    David Watson Bagpipes, Guitar, Photography, Unknown Contributor Role
•♦•    Brooks Williams Engineer
•♦•    John Zorn Clarinet, Executive Producer
•♦•    Hex Kitchen is the 1995 album by Japanese electronic wizard Ikue Mori. She normally collaborates with a number of other producers, musicians, and artists such as John Zorn, Marina Rosenfeld, Christian Marclay, Mike Patton, and members of Sonic Youth. This album features Zorn.
Member of
•♦•    Death Ambient, Death Praxis, DNA, Electric Masada, H–Alpha, Hemophiliac, IOOi, Mephista, Phantom Orchard, Synapse, Tohban Djan, Vibraslaps, The Worlds of Love.

Review by Matthew CarlinScore: ****½
•♦•   Hex Kitchen showcases downtown New York musician Ikue Mori at the height of her compositional abilities. While her unique manipulation of samples and drum machines always yields interesting sounds, some of her improvisatory and recorded work leaves something to be desired in terms of musical structure. This release, however, offers the fascinating percussive and machine sounds Mori is known for, along with some highly inventive, yet listenable songs. Most of the tracks even clock in at the three– to four–minute range, making for the closest approximation of a conventional album that will ever come from this purely experimental electronic musician. Boasting an appearance by John Zorn on clarinet, Hex Kitchen is an all–star avant–garde ensemble piece with some inspired playing by Zeena Parkins on electric harp and accordion, trombonist Jim Staley, and violinist Hahn Rowe. The real highlights of the album come with the first three tracks, though. Album opener "Slush" showcases Mori's unique approach to rhythm with driving, syncopated solo drum machines and sampler. "Woke Up Aghast" is rather catchy with a rolling bassline courtesy of Hideki Kato and surprising use of bagpipes by David Watson. Here, Mori also introduces her haunting use of vocals, which have a sort of lullaby–ish quality that portrays a frightening innocence when coupled with Mori's abrasive samples. Zorn's clarinet work, coupled with Parkins' accordion and the odd vocalizations of Catherine Jauniaux on "Angler Fish" make for the album's best moments. Hex Kitchen remains consistently solid, however, with Mori laying a solid foundation for the other musicians to work on top of, using drum machines and samplers to create alternately strong rhythmic bases and brief blasts of utter chaos. The sum total is an engaging experimental work that would be a good starting point for the uninitiated.
Bio 1:
•♦•   Ikue Mori moved from her native city of Tokyo to New York in 1977. She started playing drums and soon formed the seminal NO WAVE band DNA, with fellow noise pioneers Arto Lindsay and Tim Wright.
DNA enjoyed legendary cult status, while creating a new brand of radical rhythms and dissonant sounds; forever altering the face of rock music.
•♦•   In the mid 80's Ikue started in employ drum machines in the unlikely context of improvised music. While limited to the standard technology provided by the drum machine, she has never the less forged her own highly sensitive signature style.
•♦•   Through out in 90's She has subsequently collaborated with numerous improvisors throughout the US, Europe, and Asia, while continuing to produce and record her own music.
•♦•   1998, She was invited to perform with Ensemble Modern as the soloist along with Zeena Parkins, and composer Fred Frith, also "One hundred Aspects of the Moon" commissioned by Roulette/Mary Flagler Cary Charitable Trust.
•♦•   Ikue won the Distinctive Award for Prix Ars Electronics Digital Music category in 99.
•♦•   In 2000 Ikue started using the laptop computer to expand on her already signature sound, thus broadening her scope of musical expression. 2000 commissioned by the KITCHEN ensemble, wrote and premired the piece "Aphorism"
also awarded Civitella Ranieri Foundation Fellowship.
•♦•   2003 commissioned by RELACHE Ensemble to write a piece for film In the Street and premired in Philadelphia. Started working with visual played by the music since 2004. In 2005 Awarded Alphert/Ucross Residency.
•♦•   Ikue received a grant from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts in 2006. In 2007 the Tate Modern commissioned Ikue to create a live sound track for screenings of Maya Deren's silent films. In 2008 Ikue celebrated her 30th year in NY and performed at the Japan Society. Recent commissioners include the Montalvo Arts Center and SWR German radio program and Shajah Art foundation in UAE. Current working groups include MEPHISTA with Sylvie Courvoisier and Susie Ibarra, PHANTOM ORCHARD with Zeena Parkins, project with Koichi Makigami and various ensembles of John Zorn.
•♦•   New duo Twindrums project with YoshimiO workshop/lecture in various schools include University of Gothenburg, Dartmouth Collage, New England Conservatory, Mills Collage, Stanford University, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago
Artist Biography by Matthew Carlin
•♦•   Ikue Mori has been a key member of the downtown music scene since moving to New York from Tokyo in 1977. She began her career playing drums for the seminal "no wave" group DNA, which she formed with guitarist Arto Lindsay and keyboardist Tim Wright. After the short–lived but highly influential group broke up in 1982, Mori began improvising live and recording with experimental musicians like Fred Frith, Tom Cora and, most notably, John Zorn. By 1985, Mori had completely abandoned the standard drum set in favor of her own unique drum machine/sampler set–up. Her signature instrument evolved into a highly customized arrangement of three self–programmed drum machines which she could trigger simultaneously to perform live, as well as for use recording.
•♦•   Painted Desert In 1990, Mori received an NEA grant to work with filmmaker Abigail Child, which marked the beginning of several soundtrack projects for the musician. Throughout the 90s, Mori played and recorded with countless musicians, including projects/albums Death Praxis with vocalist Tenko, Painted Desert with guitarists Marc Ribot and Robert Quine and Death Ambient with guitarist Frith and bassist Kato Hideki. Mori's career-defining compositions on Hex Kitchen (1995) incorporate impressive performances by several of Mori's most frequent collaborators, including electric harp player Zeena Parkins, vocalist Catherine Jauniaux and trombonist Jim Staley. In 1996, Mori released her first solo drum machines album, Garden, followed by B/Side (1998), a collection of tracks originally recorded for Child's films. Mori continued to work with a myriad of performers in the avant–garde and electronic scenes in the late 1990s, including collaborations with gifted trumpeter Dave Douglas, Mr. Bungle vocalist Mike Patton, Sonic Youth's Kim Gordon, free jazz bassist William Parker and extensive work with composer/saxophonist John Zorn. Mori had several performance highlights in 1999, including an appearance on stage with Sonic Youth, a debut performance of new compositions with DJ Olive in New York City and an improvised duo with Chicago electronic music Jim O'Rourke. Ikue Mori is one of the most respected musicians in the downtown scene, renowned for her abilities as an accomplished composer and improviser and as one of the foremost electronic music innovators. •♦•   http://www.allmusic.com/
Website: http://www.ikuemori.com/
MySpace: https://myspace.com/ikuemorimusic
Interview by Jason Gross (November 1997)
•♦•   http://www.furious.com/perfect/ikuemori.html
•♦•   https://www.japansociety.org/japan_society_presents_iikue_mori_celebrating_30_years_of_life_love__music_in_nyci

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