WaqWaq Kingdom 'Essaka Hoisa' LP
Pre-order. Due 22nd November.
Essaka Hoisa, the thrilling, brand new LP of "minyo footwork" by renowned Japanese musicians Shigeru Ishihara (DJ Scotch Egg / Seefeel) and Kiki Hitomi (ex-King Midas Sound) under their mind-bending WaqWaq Kingdom guise, lands via Phantom Limb.
WaqWaq Kingdom's endless range of stylistic adventures sees them uniquely draw lines between traditional Japanese and contemporary electronic, between Jamaican dancehall and 8-bit techno, African polyrhythms and experimental music, with plenty more helping to colour a powerful, vibrant palette.
Watch the part-animated video for the lead single 'Doggy Bag' here and below. Made by Alpha Lubicz, the hyperkinetic video perfectly matches the tribal beats & bleeps as Kiki sings about food waste and humanity's destructiveness…
After 2017's debut Shinsekai on Leipzig based label Jahtari - Essaka Hoisa is the first album under the new line-up of Kiki and Shigeru, as former drummer Andrea Belfi (Nils Frahm, Mike Watt, David Grubbs) left the band to concentrate on his own projects. This personnel shift has allowed Kiki's vocal delivery and Shigeru's wild productions to explore even deeper new ground, borrowing infinitesimally small snippets of sound and style to craft a singular hotpot of music.
Conceptually, Essaka Hoisa draws influence and imagery from traditional Japanese history and mythology. The title is taken from the cry of kago carriers - seen as Kiki and Shigeru on the fantastically eye-popping illustration for the record sleeve by Kiki - two people carrying ruling-class or religious dignitaries over great distances. The shout Essaka Hoisa was said to lift the carriers’ spirits and strengthen their unity. In her lyrics, Kiki uses this imagery to explore our own reflective burden - experiencing life without an understanding of its meaning. Carrying hardship, sadness, pain and difficulty like a kago carrier, shouting essaka hoisa to get through the struggle. "We keep on going and shouting Essaka Hoisa together with partners, our kin, friends and people that we walk together and carrying on our life with laughter and tears," Kiki writes. "No matter what, I am carrying on my life. I won’t give up and keep on going, keep on making, keep on learning with hollering the word Essaka Hoisa."
Shigeru Ishihara (aka DJ Scotch Egg) has been a distinctive alien orbiting the outer dance music galaxy for over a decade, releasing radiantly unpredictable solo records through cult label Load Records (Lightning Bolt, Six Finger Satellite), as a member of legendary Seefeel, and performing with both projects across the world. Kiki Hitomi is a former member of King Midas Sound (along with The Bug and Roger Robinson), and co-founded iconic Japanese dubstep-noise duo Dokkebi Q. She is also a celebrated illustrator and designer, having created artwork for countless record sleeves and brands.
The combined interests, abilities and creative scope of the two hugely creative musicians (both currently based in Germany) - results in Essaka Hoisa, a brilliant intoxicating explosion of noise that speaks volumes to their musical powers.
Catalogue number: PHTM9LP
Label: Phantom Limb