The album is titled Elsewhere
. It is the work of Japanese drummer Keisuke Kishi
, who is based in New York. But where is elsewhere? Is it the western shore of Oahu, an area of stark landscapes and poverty, in relative isolation from the bustling tourism of Waikiki? Or is it Bagamoyo, Tanzania? The album's cover art features a photo from Bagamoyo. Kishi has spent time in both of these locales. Or is elsewhere East Village, New York City, Kishi's home ground since 2018?
The music on Elsewhere
sounds as if it was born in exotic locales. It is a mostly piano trio albumfeaturing four different pianists. And throw in some Fender Rhodes, electric keyboards, a guitar (on one tune), an Ilimba (one tune) and a saxophone (one tune).
Kishi's distinctive drumming is a prominent feature. He is a stylist, in his own way, in the manner of Jon Christensen
and Paul Motian
, using his artistry to explore an array of cultures, lands, religions and identities, expressing his thoughts on six of his own compositions along with Harold Arlen's "Over the Rainbow" and Keali'i Reichel's "E O Mai."
Beginning with the pensive "Shade of Tree," with Eishin Nose on piano, then moving into "Over The Rainbow," featuring Jun Sugiura
on piano, with the trio painting a soundscape of mystery and positivity. "Laulea" mixes a Kishi's handpan, drums and percussion into an alien orchestra, followed by the lovely piano trio bounce of "Torii," featuring pianist Ben Paterson
, leading into another handpan and percussion rumination on "Kahakai Mehana." Elsewhere
produced, recorded, mixed and mastered by the album's bassist Nori Naraoka
features a ringing clarity of sound and a cohesive expression of Kishi's musical vision. The title tunewhich gives off a vibe not unlike The Beatles' "Revolution 9," from the Fab Four's 1968 Apple Records masterpiece, The Beatles
wraps up the show in a wonderfully enigmatic way.
Shade of Tree; Over the Rainbow; Laulea; Torii; Kahakai Mehana; E O Mai; Lockdown; Elsewhere.