Ronin Arkestra - Sonkei (LP)
Led by producer, composer, and multi-instrumentalist Mark de Clive Lowe, Tokyo’s Ronin Arkestra brings together some of the most supreme and innovative players in Japan’s Jazz and electronic scene, featuring members of Kyoto Jazz Sextet, WONK, Cro-Magnon, Root Soul, Sleepwalker, Sauce81 and Kyoto Jazz Massive.
Formed in 2017, the collective’s debut album ‘Sonkei’, released via Albert’s Favourites, fuses ’60s deep and spiritual jazz with experimental electronica and is mixed by label co-founder Scrimshire. Compositions such as ‘Lullabies of the Lost’ are a deep meditation that transports us simultaneously back hundreds of years into the right here and now, while the horn-heavy, fusion-driven ‘Art of Altercation’, confronts the skill of conflict and confrontation.
Elsewhere, the impulsive and free-flowing ‘Cosmic Collisions’ merges raw grooves and electronics – an interstellar configuration of stars, light years from each other, while ‘Circle of Transmigration’ challenges the never ending circle of life, fusing soaring horns and piano-driven melodies.
It’s a fascinating evolution that has a parallel to each member in the Ronin Arkestra collective - master musicians from different bands and clans coming together to create a vagabond band of like-minded musicians - weaving the stories of their lives into a collective sound. “The members of Ronin Arkestra are some of my favorite musicians anywhere and the way we all come together in battle formation with so much heart and soul is making magic,” says de Clive Lowe.