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京都/奈良 – Kyoto / Nara 京都/奈良 – Kyoto / Nara 京都/奈良 – Kyoto / Nara 京都/奈良 – Kyoto / Nara 京都/奈良 – Kyoto / Nara 京都/奈良 – Kyoto / Nara

京都/奈良 – Kyoto / Nara

京都/奈良 – Kyoto/Nara is orbit over luna’s first ep and also the first in a series of 4 planned eps inspired from a trip to Japan in 2011.

composed, performed and mixed by Shannon Penner
mastered by Taylor Deupree (12k Mastering)

©℗2012 Shannon Penner

Background Notes:

track 1: 伏見稲荷-Fushimi Inari

01 Fushimi Inari

The Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine is one of the iconic places in Japan. There is a 4 kilometre trail up 稲荷山(Mount Inari) which is covered by thousands of red torii gates.

The shrine is dedicated to Inari, the Japanese 神(kami – god) of rice, fertility, agriculture, industry and wordly success. It is one of the main kami in the Shinto religion.

Among the torii are many statues of 狐(kitsune – foxes) who are the messengers of Inari.

track 2: 万鳥居-10000 Torii Gates

02 10000 Torii Gates

The 千本鳥居(senbon torii – red torii) is a gate typically found at Shinto shrines. It represents the passing from the profane to the sacred. The Fushimi Inari Taisha Shrine contains thousands and thousands of torii lining the path up the mountain. This gives some insight into the importance of Inari in Japanese culture.

It is an incredibly picturesque place often featured in movies and books.

track 3: lost in the midst of all this beauty

03 lost

This track was written with the overwhelming beauty of the landscape in mind. I had never traveled to anywhere remotely like this before and it pretty much took my breath away.

track 4: 大仏と神聖な鹿-Great Buddha & the Sacred Deer

04 Great Buddha

One of the highlights for me in 奈良(Nara) was visiting the 大仏殿(daibutsuden – Great Buddha’s Hall). It is the world’s largest wooden building and houses the largest bronze statue of the Buddha Vairocana. It was an intensely beautiful experience.

There is a tradition that if one can squeeze through a hole in one of the pillars, which is apparently the same dimension as the daibutsu’s nostril, that they will be able to achieve enlightenment. Pretty much only kids under 10 can achieve this feat.

Tame 鹿(shika – deer), seen as messengers of the gods roam freely around all of Nara.

track 5: 先斗町:浮世 – Pontochō: The Floating World05 pontocho

浮世(Ukiyo – The Floating World) is a term describing the pleasure-seeking culture that arose during the Edo Period. Some of the famous Japanese woodblock prints known as 浮世絵(Ukiyo-e – Pictures of the Floating World) and portray geisha, samurai, brothels, kabuki and sumo wrestlers.

Gion and Pontocho, districts within Kyoto were(and still are) important districts within this culture. If you walk through the district at nights, you may come across scenes that are right out of 浮世絵(ukiyo-e).

“Its been a journey, I realize now. Orbit over Luna have practically taken me to Japan. You can feel the influence in every track. They’ve taken us from Shrines to Gates to Districts (Ponchoto). ”

-Manan Kapoor(The Future Elements)

Kyoto-Nara new 1600

©℗2012 Shannon Penner