The interactive online radio station Pandora has proven to be quite the treasure chest. One of my current favourite albums is "Modal Soul" by Nujabes which I stumbled upon in one of my playlists. Unfortunately, I could not purchase the album in digital format through the regular sources - thus I had to dig a little deeper.
It turned out that Modal Soul was released in 2005, by Jun Seba ("Nujabes" being the anagram of his name) a Japanese hip-hop music producer and DJ. Jun also runs the record store "Guiness Records" in Tokyo, as well as the production company "Hyde Out" through which Modal Sould was released.
Modal Soul is Nujabes' second album and features, amongst others, guest artists Cise Starr & Akin from CYNE and Jazz-legend Terry Callier. These names provide for a good characterisation of the overall sound of the album which offers an intelligent mix of hip hop and Jazz in its many forms and faces.
Unfortunately, Modal Soul is currently only available as a pricey import. A fine reason to start connecting, to find an alternative, maybe even more direct channel, other than to simply 'click-buy-spend-a-fortune'.
Text: Jörg Haas | Cover: © Nujabes/Hyde Out Productions.