Reviewed by Paul Lloyd (universalsource.co.uk)
Formerly half of Rom=Pari with his brother Age, Tatsuya Yoshida started recording his own material in 1999, signing to Planet Mu soon afterwards. Following his acclaimed Dummy Variations album, Yoshida releases his second album for Planet Mu. Dreamland Idle Orchestra is a fond tribute to an old fashioned and now deserted theme park named Dreamland close to Yoshida's home in Japan.
Once again Yoshida skilfully melds styles from different ends of the spectrum to form a new style of his own. Although this fusion of sounds seems quite strange to begin with, Yoshida's keen ear for catchy melody soon allows you to quickly settle in to the combination. Often resembling a warped electronic take on the sounds you might hear around a theme park or the exhilarating experience of the rides there, Dreamland Idle Orchestra is lighter and more accessible than Dummy Variations. Collecting together full-length tracks and short instrumental interludes, Dreamland Idle Orchestra uses simplistic melodies over catchy tunes and rhythmic beats. Often oddly disjointed and placing modern electronic and traditional musical styles alongside each other, Yoshida's style is quite strange and deceptively simple sounding yet makes for strangely pleasant listening experience. While consistently utilising standard beat patterns, Yoshida mixes them with styles as diverse as rock, funk, orchestral and arcade game music, twisting and distorting them into something completely different, adding a few playful pings and pops along the way for fun. Standout tracks amongst the 17 on the album are the symphonic beats of ""Dreamland Geist Orchestra", the reflectively hazy piano and slow beats of "Icon", the funky guitar driven "Fat Baby", the addictive arcade game simplicity of "Secret Calm Life" and the minimal electronic beauty of "Yesterday Evening" and "OR".
Yoshida employs a quite original and simplistic style in his music making and this can either work in his favour or against him. Sometimes, his music can sound overly simplistic and lack some depth, at other times it can be incredibly catchy and addictive. Not an essential album but a pleasant change from the majority of electronic music currently available.
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