Better known as a visual artist who's worked with Björk, Arca and FKA twigs, Jesse Kanda has established himself as a go-to hand behind some of the darker, more alien sounds and images entering pop music and culture, first laying down his own twisted sounds on a pair of EPs in 2017 and 2018 under the name Doon Kanda.
The title Kanda has chosen for his first full-length effort is Labyrinth, but it consistently evokes another mythic environ, its watery, neo-gothic waltzes often sounding like the auditory equivalents of a woozy gondola ….
Skin is a boundary that Jesse Kanda trespasses in his visual works. A frequent collaborator of Björk, Arca, and FKA twigs, Kanda creates worlds of opalescent membranes and semi-human figures that match those artists' ideas about the physical body. In the video he directed for twigs' early track "How's That," a glistening human form deflates and then billows like a scrap of silk.
Jesse Kanda isn't just an artist who makes images. He's a worldbuilder. This process of constructing an imaginary world is usually associated with video game designers, science-fiction writers and Dungeons & Dragons players. Kanda's characters, however, have slipped and stretched across the album covers and music videos of Arca, FKA twigs and Björk.
J esse Kanda has made a considerable mark on culture with his graphic design - his mythic, bulbous, gender-indeterminate beings are the perfect foil for Arca's music, and he has made beautiful, influential collaborations with FKA twigs and Björk. He then moved into music, as Doon Kanda, with two EPs leading up to this debut album, featuring another melancholy demigod on the cover. A major theme of the decade's electronic music has been the embrace of sounds that were regarded by most people as aural trash, from the ringtone kitsch of James Ferraro's Far Side Virtual to Oneohtrix Point Never, PC Music and the vaporwave scene.