French trio Ikui Doki skate their claim in the space “between jazz and impressionsm”, dragging viscous woodwind blobs across a canvas of plucked harp to produce work that’s as pretty or impenetrable as you’d like it to be. Their self-titled LP, out now via Ayler Records, is a shuffled deck that stacks 30-second “jingles,” clanging slabs of free-improv, and misty surrealist topography — one after the other.
Opener “Pemayangtse,” named for a prominent Buddhist retreat in northeast India, falls in the latter camp, vaguely detailing a Himalayan landscape as seen from above through sleep-weighted lids. The piece stirs slowly, as if it has just become aware that it’s lucid dreaming. It breaststrokes through stratosphere, limbs outstretched, as breathy clarinet phrases leave surrounding contrails. Faint harp chords suggest the lunging outline of something below.
Plug limp on tile; clothes left on the banks; purchase confirmed. “Pemayangtse” is the release of letting go stretched over several minutes, but no less intense.