A short interview with Christoph Berg (aka Field Rotation) for a Kitchen. Label profile on Electroacoustic Tales Guide (Germany).
Q1: ”Kitchen.” is not just a label but also a design studio. When did you realize that your sort of perfectly designed Editions are demanded by collectors?
From the start, we wanted to craft each music release into an unique art objects that straddle sound, design and art. Probably, the first signs that our releases interested collectors beyond music listeners was when they were picked up by museum shops and art book stores in Japan.
Q2: You’re mainly focusing on mainly Asian independent music and arts. Could you describe the most special things about this scene?
Asian artists have a different philosophy and the way they articulate the familiar in the everyday is dissimilar to most counterparts from other parts of the world. From mimicking the play of dappled sunlight through leaves or the sense of the four seasons, the artists pay attention to an innate but rather intangible aesthetics of “beauty”, “time” and “space” that is unique within our own culture.
Q3: What does it mean to you to run a label in times of illegal file-sharing and cultural piracy in general?
Our brand consists of different aspects like design and publishing apart from just music, hence we are not pressured by illegal file-sharing to the extent of traditional record labels face. Many people will question “why run a record label in this day and age?” but this label gave us the opportunity to meet like-minded people and work with many great artists from various fields.
Q4: Could you imagine to release your work also on vinyl in future?
We are open to all formats. With the resurgence of the vinyl format, we are definitely looking into it.
Q5: What’s your hope for the sound and arts development in general in this decade?
Before digital media took over the music market, it was sufficient for record labels to focus on putting out music releases alone. We are certainly not going against digital dominance, but we do not wish to see the continual dwindling respect for the values of the physical format. Besides it being a tool for music distribution, all artists and labels will have to continue thinking of innovative and lifestyle informing approaches to make the hard format necessary again.
Original transcript – http://eatguide.tumblr.com/Kitchen-Label
haruka nakamura×junya yanagidaira×isao saito ×yow funahashi
■ 9th April 2011
■ 19:00 open /20:00 start
■ nowhere (Toyama, Japan)
■advanced 2500 yen /3000 yen (all inclusive of one drink)
■Performers : haruka nakamura (guitar,piano)
junya yanagidaira (piano)
isao saito (drums)
yow funahashi (saxophone)
For advanced booking, please contact
For more information
In the wake of the devastating disaster in Japan, there are still many in the north east of Japan that remain homeless and without sufficient food and supplies. If you would like to help raise money for the relief efforts, please do give generously to Japan, but at the same time give wisely to reputable and competent relief organizations.
To donate money directly, there is the Japan Red Cross and the Japan Society, with 100% of your contributions going towards aid.
At approximately 2pm yesterday, cries of anxiety and helplessness resounded all across Facebook and Twitter. Japan was experiencing the tremendous effects of an 8.9 magnitude earthquake. Phone calls, emails and tweets flew out from our office immediately to check if our artists, friends and partners in Japan were safe. We are extremely glad and relieved to report that all are safe right now and none are hurt.
However, chaos and disarray continues in Japan and neighbouring countries right now. Our deepest condolences to those who have lost their homes or loved ones in the face of the terrible tragedy. We felt the prayers for peace and safety from all over the world.
We pray for the day that the Light in Japan will be restored.
The Light, by haruka nakamura
Futako-Tamagawa, Tokyo, Japan, 2010, in more peaceful times.
Nice review of ironomi “sketch” on sonomu (UK). Thanks Stephen!
“As digital doomsayers (you might even call them cheerleaders) count down the days to the ultimate demise of the physical music release and the printed paper book, a small house in Singapore invests its creative thinking into combining the two to produce a unique artifact that cannot be experienced via fiber optics.
As the name suggests, Kitchen is inspired by visions of refuge, when that room was the heart of the house, where things got done, neighbours collected to visit, and stories got told. The recording was apporpriately made in an old, rented house in Mashiko, a small town nestled in the Japanese countryside known for its rustic pottery.
Ironomi are pianist Junya Yanagidaira and Yu Isobe on laptop, both born in Japan in 1984. And this, their sixth, is their first release outside that country. The music of Sketch couldn´t be simpler, nor more affecting. Casual listening – and this is a perfect album to program on repeat and allow to fill the room as your day proceeds – rewards with a quiet and introspective, improvisational ambience, a man at a piano, near an open window, with birdcalls echoing round the courtyard outside. Close listening reveals the deft hand of Isobe brushing against some notes, looping and delaying others, layering the summer afternoon buzz of local insects, in a manner whereby no one sound every repeats itself exactly, as the duo have stated.
The CD-sized book is as beautifully printed and bound as the music is captivating, and contains introductions in English and Japanese and a dozen very still but often breath-taking photographs by April Lee. Around the artbook music editions, a creative collective is growing, which includes other forms of paper design and yes, web design, too (just visit Kitchen´s own exquisite site). It dabbles in the needle trade as well, as collaborations with designers like Mame attest.”