Kodomo

Portland, USA

A World Rarely Seen

DowntempoHip-hop

Behind the Music

Music and visual art can be a powerful medium to express an awareness on an innately energetic level. In the case of The Outlaw Ocean Music Project, it can give a comprehensive emotional depiction of what happens on the seas, which I personally knew very little about until reading Ian’s book. For me, there were five main ideas I centered each of my tracks around, creating an album that starts with promise and possibilities and ends shrouded in shadow.

My first song was inspired by the prose characterizing the ocean as a neutral and vast entity —  capable of good and evil, of providing both a prison and an escape. The second mirrored the feeling of stepping on a vessel for the first time at the very onset of a voyage. There’s a sense of anxiety, but overall a feeling of excitement about the potential of new beginnings. But, as the journey progresses, monotony and repetitiveness sets in, which is captured in the third track. I envisioned long days at sea spent daydreaming, where the mind begins to create its own narrative and a new reality.

My fourth song was inspired by the high-adrenaline and gratifying moment Sea Shepherd spots an illegal fishing ship and a chase ensues. The final piece was inspired by weather — imagining some of the fogs Ian might have seen, dense and seemingly otherworldly. There’s a feeling of anxiety that accompanies it, in which the mind delves deeper and deeper into the dark.

Kodomo
About Kodomo

Emmy Award-winning composer Chris Child also produces electronic music for himself as Kodomo. The alias, the Japanese term for "child," references his upbringing in Japan. Based in New York, Child has also contributed music for a handful of games developed by Harmonix — including Amplitude, Frequency and Phase — and some of his productions have also been used by NPR. Child's Kodomo work is often melodic and dreamlike in nature, drawing from orchestral music, ambient and IDM, among other styles. During 2007 and 2008, his Kodomo releases, including the album “Still Life,” were issued on the 5 Points label. He self-released the 2011 album “Frozen in Motion.” A third album, “Patterns & Light,” arrived in 2014. Three years later, he released “Divider,” an EP incorporating found sounds into its atmospheric, sometimes beat-driven pieces.

The Journalism behind the Music

All music in this project is based on The Outlaw Ocean, a New York Times Best-Selling book by Ian Urbina that chronicles lawlessness at sea around the world. This reporting touches on a diversity of abuses ranging from illegal and overfishing, arms trafficking at sea, human slavery, gun running, intentional dumping, murder of stowaways, thievery of ships and other topics.

Learn More