The Label

Established within the cultural nexus of Tokyo and tracing its origins to Singapore, KITCHEN. LABEL stands as the home for artists traversing the realms of ambient musical expressions. Founded by Ricks Ang in 2008 and named with an essence drawn from the magic realism of Banana Yoshimoto’s novel “Kitchen,” the independent label has gone on to release music by haruka nakamura, ASPIDISTRAFLY, ironomi, Meitei, sonicbrat, Kin Leonn, Hiroshi Ebina and more.

The label’s artists share a similar obsession with sensuous, fleeting phenomena. They create painterly sound collages that mimic the shifting play of light and shadow fluttering across a wall, the surging and expiring of the sun’s resplendent rays at dusk, or the shimmer and drone of throngs of cicadas on a sultry afternoon. These deceptively simple metaphors, however, belie the feats of engineering that have gone into crafting them. KITCHEN. LABEL’s artists weave new instrumentation and musical forms together into sensitive arrangements that unravel languidly and deliberately through a time and space that seems to quiver more tremulously than our own.

Despite its domestic-sounding name, KITCHEN. LABEL is a thoroughly metropolitan phenomenon. KITCHEN. LABEL documents momentary flickers of melancholic beauty in unlikely environments. A wilful but passionate delusion of a sort, perhaps: one that tries to transmute city dross into pastoral romance, softly dissolving into the dwindling light of a late summer evening.

“A roving eye in search of the beauty of everyday life, KITCHEN. LABEL artists mimic the play of dappled sunlight through leaves, or even a certain strain of “lost” Japan memorialized in Tanizaki’s “In Praise of Shadows,” reinterpreted for modern life. They have been bridging Singapore and Japan, possibly wielding more influence than they realize.” – ArtAsiaPacific