Atsuhito Omori has been making nostalgia-tinged instrumental music as Ex Confusion for the better part of a decade now and will be soon be making his third appearance on the n5MD label with ‘I Remember When’. This will be the first of his albums to see a vinyl release which seems apropos given its highly ephemeral qualities which are ideally suited to the format.
Whereas Omori has always been adept at weaving shimmering webs of shoegazy ambient gauze, ‘I Remember When’ represents a notable shift toward a more overcast and tenebrous mood. There is a poignant, world-weary ache at the core of these drones, a density and gravitas that calls to mind the crepuscular machinations of artists like Rafael Anton Irisarri, Lee Yi, or Benoit Pioulard with whom Omari collaborates on “I Owe the Earth a Body”.
Only on “Nothing Stays the Same” does the pastoral warmth of an acoustic guitar emerge before receding again into the melancholic haze. On track after track, Omori suspends sumptuous melodic arcs in a quiescence of time while emotional colors radiate like the muted blaze of autumn leaves against a grey sky. To my ears, this is his most deeply affecting work yet by some distance; a real beauty.
I Remember When will be available March 22 on limited edition 180 gram grey vinyl, CD, and digital. Pre-orders are now available.