When Tensei released Constellate last year, I can say happily that I was won by the album really quickly; the urbqn vibes couples with the jazz undertones and the smooth confidence of the vocal performances tapped into most of the points that I like best about hip hop and fusion. Before long, I can safely say that I was singing Tensei’s praises to every receptive with which I came into contact. I must not have been alone in my abundance of praise and appreciation for the album because, just one month after the release of the album proper, Tokyo Dream Records released and instrumentals edition of the album, in hopes of ensnaring some more attention for it. The logic behind the release is sound too; with the beats and the vibe still in place, this instrumentals album is a perfect counterpart for an album which trades in performance chops, ambiance and personality. Simply said, Instrumentals offers fans who were won by Constellate a “coffee shop edition” which is genteel, urbane and perfectly smooth. While it could easily be argued that this album doesn’t stand well on its own (without the context or the personality afforded the album by the vocal performances on it), it does make for a very valuable second disc to have for those who were already won by the first or on those occasions when incidental music is a must.
(Tokyo Dawn Records)
Tensei – Constellate LP: http://www.groundcontrolmag.com/vinyl-vlog-378/
The Constellate Instrumentals LP is out now in a limited edition pressing. Buy it here from Tensei’s bandcamp page.