Nº 13 SONICBRAT – STRANGER TO MY ROOM
“Stranger to my room”, sonicbrat’s (also known as Darren Ng) latest and debut release on Kitchen. Label, is a beautifully crafted album of 11 instrumental tracks consisting of solo piano and pure acoustic recordings. Recorded entirely in his own house where he has been living alone for the past 8 years, “Stranger to my room” is an album exploring the personal relationship of time, space and being, reflecting upon a familiar yet alienating loneliness. The atmosphere of “Stranger to my room” is suitably intimate and warmly affecting – the track titles are reflective of small fleeting wonders observed at home that Darren has used as theme to base his compositions on, eliciting profound emotions from the simplest of metaphors.
Darren’s approach to producing is that of a classically-trained composer’s, which makes “Stranger to my room” not unlike a composition with 11 movements. The record opens with sparse piano improvisation played in the dark of the night, providing the listeners with nocturnal reverie and setting the mood for the album. As the record progresses, the arrangement shines and become fuller as cellos, violins, acoustic guitar and an array of acoustic instruments come into play. In parts, the album’s intimacy and textural quality is created by his recording techniques – from a closely mic’d upright piano to capture hammered hits of the piano, to microphones placed at various parts of his house where even the tiniest details and sounds are brought to the surface. The result creates a rich and natural environment recorded with the purest and most microscopic process. “Stranger to my room” is a deeply personal work which invites the listener to rediscover the forgotten in the familiar within the living space.
“Stranger to my room” is presented in a 16-page art book format featuring a collaboration with Helsinki-based artist Aiwei Foo. In a place where alienation and familiarity both become parts of existing within a space, Aiwei mirrors time shifts and one’s personal backdrop against changes and the environment in her parallel imagery. The album is mastered by label curator Ricks Ang (also one-half of ASPIDISTRAFLY), “Stranger to my room” is an album destined to pique the interest of listeners of classically aligned contemporaries such as Goldmund, Nils Frahm, Akira Kosemura and haruka nakamura.
Charmed by the evanescence of things and the tacet moments in life, SONICBRAT celebrates the ephemeral quiesce of an urban reality. The brainchild of Darren Ng (b. 1979), his musical penchants reside in the simple, quiet and minimal…— Read more
- CATALOGUE NO.
CD + Art Book / Digital
Classical, Ambient, Acoustic
200mm x 140mm, 16pp book, offset printed, full color on uncoated paper
- RELEASE DATE
- “クラシックが基にある響きを持ったピアノに、チェロなどすべて生音での録音は、都会的な洗練と田園的な素朴さを持つ。細やかに施された装飾がうっすらと涼しさを運ぶ、アジアの夏のために作られたかのような1枚。作風にはすでに完成された構築性を見ることができ、静かな作品ながら才能をひしと感じさせるもの。Stranger To My Room――その部屋に訪れる異邦の者を指すのは、はたして見えない音楽のミューズかそれとも知り得る誰かか。” – 雨と休日 Top Ten Albums of 2013
— 雨と休日 , Japan
- “絶賛オススメ。シンプルな美しさと親密な暖かさに包まれるピアノ・ポストクラシカル作品。GoldmundやDustin O’Halloran好きはマストっす!” – Tower Records Japan Recommendation of the Month.
— Tower Records, Japan
- “いつまでも浸っていたいあたたかなメランコリー” - Pastel Records Top Seller, July 2013
— Pastel Records, Japan
- “”A gradual immersion in the hours of the day. No words are spoken and they are not needed. Darren Ng weaves sounds as an intimation of a person’s sojourn through nocturne and daytime. The pace is Ozu-esque.” 4/5
— The Straits Times, Singapore
- “An album of stark beauty and it seems that the silences in between notes are just as important as the music itself. This is a modern classical album that doesn’t come across as pretentious or difficult, just 11 moments of pure calm that will make you forget all the rigours of life for just a fleeting moment.” 8/10
— Norman Records, UK
- “Music of exquisite classical-electronic character that’s earmarked by the label’s customary taste, restraint, and sensitivity.”
— Textura, Canada
- Kitchen. Labelからのニューリリースが、またまた素晴らしいです。気品のある、静謐な美しさを湛えた楽曲群にうっとり.
— Quiet Moments, Japan
- “sonicbrat has given us with “Stranger To My Room” moments of rapturous beauty, eleven moments that bypass the spaces hidden behind the mute, in the fragile boundary that separates the silence from weak noise. Notes of tenuous lyricism that reveal the intimacy of his loneliness.”
— Hawai, Chile