Color Filter

When I was younger, I obsessed over the Darla catalog and shop. During those nascent Napster days—the dial-up days—it was a godsend for a burgeoning collector like me; it presciently curated these compilations that were both esoteric and simpatico with my evolving. I was impressionable then, and it helped me define and settle my preferences, I suppose.

Recently, I started exploring their impressive body of work anew, and, unsurprisingly, I've found I missed a good amount while in the throes of my first foray into the library.

One group I've discovered this way is Color Filter (カラー・フィルター), which began as the solo project of Ryuji Tsuneyoshi (ツネヨシリュウジ), a commercial music composer, and eventually evolved into a duo when a woman named Yuki Nishimura (ニシムラユキ) joined.

Smooth and luscious wall-of-sound stuff that eases its way through synth-pop, dub, downtempo, all the while maintaining a presence that is, at least to me, instantly recognizable as Japanese. Perhaps it's the contented, blissful preciousness of the music.

Postscript: They covered New Order's "Regret" for an odd little comp, called Re:Movement, made for the Japanese market back in 2001.