Those into the artistic, abstract side of electronic music know about New York record label SpinSpinNYC. For the last eight years, the label - headed up by musician / DJ Nutritious and dancer / publicist Zoe Wilder - has thrown some of the city’s most memorable events, for free, like Williamsburg’s weekly Brooklyn Shakedown parties and Fetish Authentic featuring intimate performances by Dennis Ferrer, Honey Dijon, Escort and Body Language, to name a few, all-the-while releasing some of the industry’s more intricately orchestrated, artful sounds. Their roster is small by intention, a bespoke gallery of music showcasing acclaimed works from Infernal Devices and Dynasty Electrik, as well as Norwegian producer Kohib, RCA / Capitol Records legend Duke Williams, and D.C. vocalist Mustafa Akbar.
One of the label's more recent signings is Otodojo, a Williamsburg Brooklyn native (yes, they exist) based in Ithaca while studying for his PhD in chemical biology at Cornell. In Japanese, Otodojo translates to “a sound place for learning.” The producer’s Autumnal EP A Piece Removed (available streaming and download, released last October) is three tracks of layered, deep, cinematic electronic with a sprinkling of Eastern influences: nudging kicks and resonant bells dance about rolling bass, ambient atmospheres, striking a balance somewhere between (what’s most likely) Otodojo’s primal vex and inner tranquility.
Today, MAGNETIC premieres the video for "Down" off the EP, produced by Jacob Mroczek and Kristi Gogos of Playhouse90, an interdisciplinary partnership based in Ithaca currently applying for citizenship in The Royal Kingdoms of Elgaland-Vargaland. The video, referencing breezy cinematic shifts between images of spring blossoms to ethereal visions of summertime wanderlust, is a first look inside the mind of the SpinSpinNYC wunderkind.
“We felt that it was important to convey a sense of travelling, of distance between people,” says Playhouse90 who gathered footage while traversing the globe. “The shot of the green mountains, toward the beginning, is from our travels near the Greece-Macedonia border. And the orbs of light were captured from across a body of water--lights on the Genesee river in our hometown of Irondequoit, and lights from across the lake in Ohrid.” The video was produced around a similar time between the EP’s October release and Otodojo’s Ecuadorian adventures.
With all his leanings in advanced science, Otodojo is dualistically a naturalist and comes from an incredibly artistic family--indicative of the young producer’s firm grasp of the interplay between excitement and subtlety. His brother Tenkai (aka Zetaohm) constructs his own custom synth modules and he’s also an excellent visual artist and psychedelic VJ. Check out Tenkai’s kickstarter for his Fluxus One Voltage Sequencer. And their father Hiroshi Kariya is a New York based sculptor and meditative creative who exhibited "Sound Show, special project: Meditation" at MOMA PS1 in 1979 and "Sutra: One thing in everything: everything in one thing,” at ICA Philadelphia in 1990, with additional exhibits among various other museums and galleries.
A Piece Removed by Otodojo is available on iTunes and all others digitally worldwide. His second EP drops on SpinSpinNYC this Summer.
Connect with Otodojo online: