Mekong Moon is the debut LP from Xua, aka Joshua Lee Vineyard, of Portland, Oregon’s space funk outfit Swahili. The genesis of Mekong Moon came during a hiatus for Swahili, during which Vineyard traveled across Southeast Asia. Like some strange combination of Alan Lomax and Anthony Bourdain, the album is the first in a series of “aural slideshow” records combining his love of ‘70s synth techniques, sci-fi retrofutures, and the field recordings of his travels.
In Xua's own words: “As a child in the '80s, the talk of an emerging Asian economy, during the transition between analog and digital, taking over the world had stuck with me. What would a future world sound like if eastern culture emerged as the world's dominating power? What unheard radio transmissions would emerge?”
The result is an album that references '70s synth albums -- not the Germanic Kosmiche of Tangerine Dream and Conrad Schnitzler, but instead the “fourth world” pop of Brian Eno, Jon Hassell, and Moebius & Plank stewing in the humidity of a Southeast Asian sunrise.