Here’s a tried and true story. Man moves somewhere exotic (think East Bay). Man gets “lost” in woods around his new home. Man finds abandoned shack in the woods. Man becomes musically inspired. Man records inspiration.
Seemingly cut out of a Bon Iver autobiography, Luca Young, or Kouta, has a tale to tell. With a Japanese name that translates to “short song,” Kouta has emerged from the woods, quite literally, with a precocious piece of work named for its locale of inspiration: Orinda, California.
Young spent a year of solitude in the woods east of Berkeley to produce Orinda EP, a delicately whittled and deep four-track debut. Deemed an “experiment” by its creator, the project is intuitive, with each movement or layered addition a careful, emotive deliberation. Take the chillingly beautiful “Branches,” rising up from static to mix in polyrhythmic beats and end in a flurry of recorded bird chirps and a single, vivacious guitar. “Sakura,” a track composed for a significant other, is equally progressive, recalling the vocal hooks of Baths as Kouta lazily repeats the words “pleasant combination” against a steady backbeat.
Admittedly a simple man, the 2o-something Bay Area (by way of Japan then Hawaii) producer has little rhyme or reason in his developments, allowing internal pathos to guide creation. His pieces are imaginative, a characteristic that cannot be attributed to his song titles. “Granola” a dark and ambient track, was titled because “I was eating a bowl of it while making the song,” said Young. There’s also a track entitled “Xanax.”
Simple man, indeed.
Download Kouta’s full four-song EP, Orinda, here.
Kouta- Branches (download)
Kouta- Sakura (download)