Keigo Oyamada aka Cornelius is the de facto king of Shibuya-kei, a subgenre of ‘90s Japanese pop, which drew influences from French pop, bossa nova, and house. Formerly a member of the Shibuya-kei band Flipper’s Guitar, the producer went solo in 1991 and launched a successful career, which went far beyond Shibuya-kei and continues to influence the global indie scene (Kimbra, New Zealand recording artist featured on Gotye’s 2012 hit “Somebody That I Used to Know,” often cites him as an inspiration). Fantasma is the third album from Keigo, and it consists of 17 cut-and-paste-style tracks that truly defy any attempt at categorization, but here’s one anyway: it’s an eclectic musical soup that jumps in and out of Shibuya-kei, noise, electronica, psych pop, rock, and ambient-hip-hop at exhilarating rates. Fantasma is also noted for the orchestral-style arrangements, a feat that earned Cornelius the “modern day Brian Wilson” title, and this remastered vinyl reissue is the perfect way to experience the Japanese maestro’s visionary, ever-relevant work. Recommended.
- gatefold sleeve
- digital download included
- music label: Lefse Records 1997 / 2016
reviewed by donut savage 06/2016