Despite three years’ worth of material to his name, Imugem Orihasam is surprisingly hard to pin down. One month he’s doing panoramic techno for Nsyde, the next future jazz for New Kanada, pulsating ambient for Ilian Tape or deep house for Fred P’s label. But a faint thread does connect all these records: dub. It’s not immediately obvious, because Orihasam’s treatments are rarely drastic. Rather than plunging his sounds to murk-filled depths, he seems to prefer shrouding them with delicate mists. In light of this, it makes sense to see the Japanese artist appearing on Brendon Moeller’s Steadfast Records, even if he’s never been affiliated with a dub-focused label before. Exude; itself is somewhat surprising, however. It’s grim and abstract — qualities not commonly found in Orihasam’s previous work.
“10 Minutes Ago” wanders through a tough, labyrinthine progression, feeling entirely dystopian. Almost no part of it seems solid, groaning acid lines and desolate patches of delay mostly conjuring images of dilapidation. “CHGM” is somewhat similar but opts for more concrete sounds, leaving the dubby, veil-like effects to congregate in the track’s bottom end. “I-PM” and “Exude” are the most abstract and functional cuts, respectively. Largely beatless, the former pitches slowly back and forth like a derelict tanker ship. Its creepy vibe is reminiscent of Cio D’Or’s “Magnetfluss,” all windy echoes and implied footsteps. The latter is utterly frenzied, with rapid, helicoptering chords in control from start to finish. Exude; isn’t quite as gripping as it might have been in the hands of someone more devoted to this kind of music, but it still speaks of considerable talent. Where Orihasam next chooses to employ his skills is the exciting bit.