- Two energetic arrangements, true to form.
- Jun Kamoda, the energetic house producer from Japan, has built a reputation over the past couple of years for sticking to a ride or die production formula. It's a trait one can assume is left over from his hip-hop days. You can hear it running through his track "Physical Graffiti," released in 2016 on Mr. Saturday Night. It samples a backroom rave-up guitar riff pummeled into submission, with the "He's Able" lyric snatched from some Auntie's God-fearing gospel collection. Those shouts to the almighty nose-dive immediately under a wall of Numero Group funk components. When those deep bass drum hits resonate, overflowing with spectacle, that's when other producers would reign it in a bit. Not Jun Kamoda. He keeps going, fun crushing the bejeezus out of a sample.
By pushing frequencies to the brink, Kamoda puts listeners in the midst of a marathon second church service, with bass-slapping funk that would make Larry Graham proud. He makes his bones working in the maximal part of the pool. Looping the right parts and strong-arming designs in certain segments, he comes within inches of being wrong strong, as Miles Davis would put it. Flying close to the sun and pressing that maximum fun button. It works, most of the time.
Escape The Night, Kamoda's new release on his Jun Records imprint, showcases his all fingers and thumbs approach. On the title track, nimble basslines snap with extra recoil along with a vocal taken from city pop singer Hitomitoi's "The Night." This exercise in restraint, perfect for living room dance party rewinds, is intimate, simple and lush. An outlier in the discography.
On "Funky Protection," Kamoda defaults to his trademark go big or go bigger method. Without hesitation or finesse, he turns Japanese funk band Zainichi Funk's "Bakudan Kowai" into an overused trope. But we get it: Kamoda's having fun, letting loose, maxing out that kitchen-sink approach by tossing everything against the wall. But zeal doesn't always translate into forward motion. Kamoda does know how to make things big and sexy. Maybe the overreach is on purpose. At a time where nobody really should be dancing in clubs or public spaces, we get a weird treat: the opportunity to appreciate that super-sized, large dance floor sound while sipping from our red cups on the couch.
01. Escape The Night
02. Funky Protection