Tim Hecker - Konoyo
Critic Score
Based on 20 reviews
2018 Ratings: #215 / 831
User Score
Based on 310 ratings
2018 Ratings: #118
Liked by 6 people
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While carrying over many of the practices of his previous record, Tim Hecker shifts his perspective away from the dreamscapes of Love Streams and explores a darker spiritual realm on Konoyo.


Hecker's clever ability to shift and adapt is clearly on display with Konoyo. A dreamlike song cycle, the album is more than an extension of the grandeur of Love Streams. It's a refined, focused exploration of traditions both adhered to and transcended.

The 405

Each time I’ve listened to Konoyo, there’s been one moment (of sorts) that catches me off-guard and cements it as one of Hecker’s greatest achievements.


By destroying, contorting and reconfiguring these sounds, Hecker draws out the most visceral emotions in himself via soundwaves -- his music being his therapy, and us, the audience, being his witness to his solemn excursion into his very soul. It's all too beautiful.

Spectrum Culture
For once, Hecker has not conquered; he has submitted. Whether the gorgeous, tumbling music is an ascent or descent, we’re probably not meant to know.
The Line of Best Fit

While Konoyo achieves divine quality, it’s Hecker’s meticulous scrutiny of himself that allows new modes of delivery to shine through the confines of his music.

On the least dense and most inquisitive album of his career, the experimental musician creates a fascinating dialogue between his technology and some of the world’s most ancient instruments.
Under The Radar

That you may find yourself frozen in a listening state is evidence of Hecker's genius and there's always something more profound about finding yourself in that state unwittingly. He reaches for and finds spaces on shelves in a cupboard behind a wall separating you from a dimension you didn't know existed. Konoyo represents his farthest reach.

Resident Advisor
Hecker remains irreducible as a composer. At times, he brings to mind an ice sculptor, carving out staggering shapes from giant blocks of sound that feel crushingly heavy even as they seem to melt away.

Konoyo takes several listens to fully appreciate, as do most Hecker releases, but it's another excellent example of the distinct mixture of bleakness and majesty which he excels at creating.

The Guardian
Having created his own particular aesthetic over nearly two decades – imagine an ambient dreamscape in the rain-soaked alley between a church and a nightclub – the Canadian composer Tim Hecker continues to hone and broaden it out.
Drowned in Sound

At its best ... Konoyo exists as a glorious symphony that brings together the starkness of electronic experimentation and the human warmth of traditional acoustics into an astonishing whole. As ever with Hecker, essential listening.

Northern Transmissions

For Konoyo, Hecker takes simple song ideas and runs them until they become a totally new experience. Though Hecker ends up repeating himself at times on this album, there’s something mystifying to his sense of sound.

Loud and Quiet
The Canadian electronic auteur spent time in Japan for his ninth record, ‘Konoyo’ (translated ‘the world over here’), and the effect is as challenging and transcendent as anything in his back catalogue.
Rolling Stone

Bringing a new sonic palette into his discipline of manipulated notes and overwhelming whoosh, Hecker gushes, drones and distends in ways that are both new and familiar.

'Konoyo', Tim Hecker’s ninth album, is a balanced, thoughtful record that can feel at points both joyous and suffocating.
The Skinny
It is remarkable and sometimes terrifying, but ultimately not as impactful as the fleet of musical hammers that dominated his last three albums, each of which raised the stakes for Hecker and pushed the frontier of his imagination.
The Needle Drop

Among Tim Hecker's least direct efforts, Konoyo at its best is sonically and conceptually rich thanks to contributions from gagaku ensemble Tokyo Gakuso. Unfortunately, the sound-play is lacking on a few of the pieces.

Hey! It leaked.

"This life" remains the same.

"In Death Valley" the reverberations of "This life" become swallowed by structure and purpose.Where doom and despair reigned freely, now caged and trapped within a body, there's a more natural growth. the track truly builds from what was the remnants of the overlapping sounds of "This life" and ages it into a mirage of water across what is feeling like Heckers most distanced piece. Things begin to fall apart ... read more
Sorry to all the artsy fartsy critics and stans out there if I’m not too keen to revisit a straight hour of a buildup to a subsequent track that never comes. Tim Hecker is the Samuel Beckett of music.
This album is really interesting for two reasons: the type of sounds it provides and the fact that it always seems to build up to something and never does. After some research, I discovered Hecker based this album on "gagaku" (which means 'elegant music), a type of ancient classical japanese music. And I also discovered that the theme of this album is the "negative space" or, in other words, the place where you go when you die. An empty, dark but beautiful place. There's no ... read more
it's cool great moments but yeah just inessential idk you could get rid of like half of this
Konoyo starts off amazing with easily the most standout track This Life, but as you slowly progress through the hour long project, it becomes apparent that your attention slowly drifts away and Konoyo slowly becomes background noise rather than an engaging Ambient/ Drone record so although the album has its amazing moments and is far from bad in fact it is enjoyable, fun and sometimes difficult but rewarding, it doesn't offer the same engaging level of atmosphere or level of texture to warrant ... read more
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Track List

  1. This life
  2. In Death Valley
  3. Is a rose petal of the dying crimson light
  4. Keyed out
  5. In mother earth phase
  6. A sodium codec haze
  7. Across to Anoyo
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Added on: July 31, 2018