A Leisurely Swim To Everlasting Life

Ki Oni

AKP Records, 2023


REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen


The recording moniker of the Los Angeles resident Chuck Soo-Hoo, as Ki Oni (the name was taken from a Godzilla website) the electronic artist embraces his Chinese heritage with these five involved pieces that bring waves of surreal sounds and skilled looping. The songs here pay homage to his grandmother, who passed away in early 2023, and looks back on the summers spent swimming and eating from her garden.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

The bright textures of “An Infinite Drive” open the listen with a colorful dreaminess that hovers across the meditative expanse. “Floating In A Stream Of Consciousness” then follows, and recruits a very focused ambience of twinkling dynamics, nearly New Age-like calming and a meticulous vision of lush and unpredictable sounds.

The third and longest track, “Reincarnation At The End Of The World,” unfolds across 22 plus minutes of hazy layers of emotional intimacy that’s reflective in mood. “My Grandmother’s Garden,” the album’s best, then carries a distinct droning that comes with the noises of nature that complement Soo-Hoo’s thoughtful song craft.

The final piece, “To Wander Beyond The Aquatic Center,” is a bit fuller in scope, before settling into a simmering presence of cinematic swells of beauty and mystery.

Expanding off his 2021 release Stay Indoors And Swim, Soo-Hoo reflects back on his childhood, and the concept of a spirit transitioning to the afterlife. It's a highly experimental and abstract affair, but certainly is easily accessible, where he employs field recordings as a base for each track.

Soo-Hoo recorded, produced and mixed the album, which is available physically as a pink cassette. The eye-catching artwork from Sean Conrad certainly suits this “Music For Floating Spirits,” which could easily soundtrack a serene period of self-examination.

Rating: B

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



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