Eadonmm’s beats prove black is back

by Mike Sunda

Special To The Japan Times

“Black is the new black” always seems like a safe motto when it comes to picking clothes, but in an electronic-music world that is constantly churning out micro-genre ephemera, some would argue that black has gone out of fashion.

Witch house might have been the Internet’s leather-clad darling in the late 2000s, but its popularity was soon overtaken by more multicolored, upbeat strands of electronica. With his debut album, “Aqonis,” Osaka’s Shinya Wada — who makes music as Eadonmm (pronounced “Eadon”) — is bringing darkness back.

“The Kansai area has a history of interesting acts working with a ‘dark’ sound,” Wada says. He mentions Steven Porter — the (confusingly) Japanese duo behind Kyoto imprint 10 Label — whose releases have featured tracks by industrial techno behemoths such as Perc and Ancient Methods — as well as Night Cruising, a regular event that has long championed Japanese artists such as Cuushe and Ametsub.

Meanwhile, Wada’s own work has seen him cross paths with another of Japan’s great hopes — Osaka’s Seiho, on whose record label Day Tripper “Aqonis” was recently released.

“I worked on the album in my own studio at home,” Wada says. “Then for the mastering I went to Seiho’s studio where we listened and worked on it together, until our respective impressions for the album began to align.”

Dictionary-defying track titles such as “Gothic Anamnesis” and “Oblivio Throb” conjure up an atmosphere of black magic and cult mysticism, while the sound of splashes and drips of water frequently seep into Wada’s productions, hinting at some prevailing aquatic concept. Although there is a sizeable chunk of ambient, dronelike atmospherics, the album also contains some surprisingly club-ready cuts that recall Tri Angle’s Holy Other or Evian Christ at his more introspective.

As well as working on his own music, Wada also heads up IdleMoments — a regular event in Kansai that has been a driving force behind pushing some of the area’s most promising up-and-comers.

“I started the event in 2011,” Wada says. “At the time, I was surrounded by creators but everyone was playing at different events. I wanted to form a loose sort of community based around a party, as opposed to just thinking of it as a one-off event each time.”

Just as “Aqonis” is full of surprises, Wada’s attitude towards IdleMoments is also one that embraces the unconventional.

“With the lineups, I try to link artists who might not normally perform together, and create something unexpected from that,” he says. “The concept changes with each edition, but I’m always aiming to deliver something that can only ever be experienced on that one day alone.”

Eadonmm’s “Aqonis” is in stores now. For more information, visit eadonmm.com.