C. Memi

Heavenly Peace
C. Memi
Heavenly Peace

Of all the 70s/80s Japan reissue initiatives that have sprung up in the last couple of years, Bitter Lake - run by Adam, boss of NY’s Material World store and redoubtable punk stable Katorga Works - is rapidly shaping up to be the best (thanks James M. for the flag). Having brought Dendo Marionette’s super-obscure ’81 flexi of zoned industrial pop to the masses (relatively speaking), for its second limited release BL turns to C. Memi’s much-admired private press oneaway Heavenly Peace, transferring the original 7”s tightly packed five tracks and eighteen minutes of music to 12” (it definitely benefits from the extra oxygen). Originally released in 1983, this pocket symphony of luminous and elegant art-pop/DIY is the only documented solo offering from Memi, who flirted with stardom as a member of Osaka new wave combo Neo Matisse. When that band split in ’81, drummer Jun Isawaki lent Memi his 8-track and invited her to cut a solo LP for his new label Fairy Records. The resulting record, which ended up being Fairy’s first and last release, wouldn’t have sounded out of place on Vanity, splitting the difference between dour, droning minimal synth and disarmingly pretty faux-chanson. The whole thing is magnificent, but the title track’s stately, crepuscular synth-pop is nigh-on perfect…somewhere between Moral, Aunt Sally, Virginia Astley, D-Day and Julee Cruise…the stuff of pastel dreams. Limited to 500 and sold out at source, if you buy just one EXTREMELY TASTEFUL Japanese record this year, make it this…


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