Ryuichi Sakamoto S/D

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he is very attractive

by another name (amateurist), Friday, 23 July 2010 01:20 (nine years ago) link

he might win the women think he's the hottest category, true

iago g., Friday, 23 July 2010 01:24 (nine years ago) link

I've been listening the fuck out of Esperanto since r1o posted his thread on it the other day. I probably like it even more than 1000 Knives.

fidel castro clone (corey), Friday, 23 July 2010 02:31 (nine years ago) link

six months pass...

To anyone who didn't like Illustrated Musical Encyclopedia - seek out the Japanese version, called Ongaku Zukan; only about half the tracks from the original release wound up on the American version. This one includes "Replica" which is absolutely stunning and one of my favorite pieces of his.

B-2 Unit and Esperanto are indeed great albums, but they took me forever to really get into, especially the latter. Kind of minimal but very cool and revolutionary. Also seek the "Warhead" 12" and the "Forbidden Colours" single with the Bamboo tracks. Otherwise if you're in the market for more cool experimental electronic stuff, you can always check out Hosono's discography.

frogbs, Monday, 14 February 2011 20:03 (nine years ago) link

three weeks pass...

Search GEM Collection if you can find it. It's a wonderful collection of synthy odds n' ends from the early to mid 80's that spans a variety of styles - from J Pop to Fairlight + beatbox exercises.

― François de Roobabe (Capitaine Jay Vee), Friday, February 5, 2010 5:22 AM (1 year ago)

I can't find this anywhere — halp

corey, Sunday, 13 March 2011 17:23 (nine years ago) link

also the alternate mix of "Happy End" that's on the Arrangement EP is the shit — should've been on BGM imo

corey, Sunday, 13 March 2011 18:33 (nine years ago) link

Never heard the Arrangement EP; this is more Left Handed Dream stuff isn't it? Loved that album

Currently have an RS tune stuck in my head, but can't remember what it is!! The only line is "good morning, good evening, where are you?"

frogbs, Monday, 14 March 2011 14:35 (nine years ago) link

half the tracks are versions of LHD songs with added lyrics sung by Robin Scott (the "Pop Musik" guy). I don't really like them, but the second half are tracks that weren't on the album (with the different mix of "Happy End")

corey, Monday, 14 March 2011 14:37 (nine years ago) link

"good morning, good evening, where are you?"



corey, Monday, 14 March 2011 14:39 (nine years ago) link

There's a nice update of that song on the Playing the Piano album - I'm pretty sure that's one of the tracks he played during his Toronto concert too.

Sean Carruthers, Monday, 14 March 2011 14:41 (nine years ago) link

I'll have to check it out then...that's one of his best albums, I always randomly get "Venezia" stuck in my head too

Recently got a few Akiko Yano albums; no thread about her here but so far her early albums (at least) seem to really be a treat...anyone heard of them??

frogbs, Monday, 14 March 2011 15:24 (nine years ago) link

I've heard "Ai Ga Nakucha Ne" (sp) — has all the YMO members contributing music iirc and a duet with David Sylvian. Her voice is nice, has kind of a young Kate Bush timbre

corey, Monday, 14 March 2011 15:39 (nine years ago) link

I like Japanese Girl and I have a great more recent album that I have no idea what it's called because it's nearly all in japanese.

Ah, her website is also in English, it's called 'Honto No Kimochi' and it's aces.

MaresNest, Monday, 14 March 2011 15:51 (nine years ago) link

The album that is..

MaresNest, Monday, 14 March 2011 15:51 (nine years ago) link

I've been listening to a lot of YMO over the last few years but hadn't really heard much of their solo works up until recently. I did own Illustrated Musical Encyclopedia for a while but just couldn't get into it. I gave B-2 Unit a listen and sadly that didn't click either. I did listen to a lot of Yukihiro Takahashi's albums and fell in love with the run he did from 80-83. I think I prefer his work as it's more similar to the more poppy moments of YMO, especially Naughty Boys which is one of my favourite albums of all time. I really loved Immigrants by the Sandii & The Sunsetz and Tutu by Miharu Koshi which were both produced by Haruomi Hosono. I tried one of his albums but it was a bit harder to get into. If anyone has any other suggestions of which albums I should try that would be greatly appreciated.

Kitchen Person, Monday, 14 March 2011 15:53 (nine years ago) link

Have you heard Sadistic Mika Band?

MaresNest, Monday, 14 March 2011 15:57 (nine years ago) link

Cochin Moon is probably Hosono's best, but I listen to Coincidental Music a lot xp

corey, Monday, 14 March 2011 15:58 (nine years ago) link

Kitchen - if you're looking for stuff that sounds like YMO, you're not really going to find it, except for those three Takahashi albums, which definitely sound like a YMO-side project, but in a good way. I'd be curious as to which Hosono album you got; he didn't do any solo stuff inside YMO besides Philharmony, which is a very neat album (though a little sparse) - he's definitely the kind of Eno-like artist who can do many many different styles and not look back. I guess I need to know what kind of stuff you're into before I can really say, but as I mentioned Sakamoto's Left Handed Dream is a tough one to go wrong with..

One thing you can do is to find the YEN record compilations; tons of great artists on those, and the YMO members were involved on nearly every release.

frogbs, Monday, 14 March 2011 15:58 (nine years ago) link

btw Paraiso is my favorite Hosono album - but if you like the non-standard/Monad period, please find the soundtrack he did for Nokto de la Galaskia Fervojo, it's seriously amazing in all the ways Hosono usually is. It's one of the coldest sounding albums I own.

frogbs, Monday, 14 March 2011 16:00 (nine years ago) link

Also, maybe check out Sakamoto's 1000 Knives record.

MaresNest, Monday, 14 March 2011 16:01 (nine years ago) link

Love to hear those YEN comps.

MaresNest, Monday, 14 March 2011 16:02 (nine years ago) link

listening to Ongaku Zukan on your rec btw, frogbs — thanks! I already loved this album so hearing the Japan-only tracks is like finding a secret level in a video game I've played 100 times

corey, Monday, 14 March 2011 16:03 (nine years ago) link

Yeah I had a feeling I would struggle to find stuff that sounded just like YMO. It was an amazing moment when I discovered all the Yukihiro albums, like I'd found another batch of lost YMO classics from that great period. I couldn't believe I'd never heard Drip Dry Eyes before. Tomorrow's Just Another Day is probably my favourite album of that run, the production is insane. They were all pretty easy to get on vinyl too unlike a lot of the albums from this scene.

Philharmony was the Hosono album I tried, it was nice enough but not really something I would listen to a lot. I am quite a big Eno fan but as you can probably guess it's the four vocal based albums from his 70's period that I love him for. If there's anymore of Hosono's albums that are slightly poppier or more song based I would give them a go.

I will give Left Handed Dream a listen, I love that artwork. Are those Yen compilations easy to track down?

Kitchen Person, Monday, 14 March 2011 16:10 (nine years ago) link

Not heard anything by Sadistic Mika Band. I get the impression the stuff they all released in the 70's is quite different. I listened to the first Yukihiro album Savannah and I just didn't like it at all, it was almost easy listening Muzak.

Kitchen Person, Monday, 14 March 2011 16:13 (nine years ago) link

It's kind of funny, Hosono had the same type of 'pop' phase but his was more exotica/tropical stuff. His albums with Happy End are really good. I understand if you didn't like Philharmony but can you at least admit that "Sports Man" and "LDK" are first-rate? ;)

A good reference is this:

BTW I would be all for some kind of Japanese New Wave listening club similar to the Krautrock one. I mean that page above lists hundreds of albums and nearly half of them seem to have some link to YMO

frogbs, Monday, 14 March 2011 16:23 (nine years ago) link

corey - I was pretty surprised as well to find that the U.S. release cuts off half of the tracks, and also to realize that "Field Work" and "Steppin' Into Asia" didn't really fit with it at all. Sadly few outside of Japan seem to know about it. It sucks because "Replica" is my favorite RS track (at least, according to iTunes)

frogbs, Monday, 14 March 2011 16:26 (nine years ago) link

iTunes says my most-played RS track is "Dolphins"

corey, Monday, 14 March 2011 16:42 (nine years ago) link

BTW, just discovered that if you have access to the Japanese iTunes store, there are oodles of Playing the Piano Live concerts available from the past three years, including the ones he did on his swing through North America this past year. Just downloaded the Toronto show. They're only 1500 yen too, which makes them cheaper than most of the albums on the Japanese store!

Sean Carruthers, Monday, 14 March 2011 17:52 (nine years ago) link

I hate to be negative, but I really dislike the piano versions of his older songs — it makes me think of when someone orchestrates the music from the Final Fantasy games. Chintzy and artificial the originals sounds might be, they're a huge part of why I enjoy this music so much, and piano versions just turn them into elevator music imo.

corey, Monday, 14 March 2011 17:59 (nine years ago) link

Can see that, sure, but I actually like 'em a lot myself. Have really been enjoying a lot of other piano-based work like Olafur Arnalds and Max Richter etc, and so sometimes these versions really connect with me in a way that some of the 80s and 90s version don't. For example, the original "Amore" was a sophistopop high-gloss thing, but the piano version is quite moody. Not sure how much of this is just my love for the sound of the piano and how much of it is the rearrangement of the songs, though.

Sean Carruthers, Monday, 14 March 2011 18:03 (nine years ago) link

"Amore", yep, that's the track, thank you

frogbs, Monday, 14 March 2011 18:05 (nine years ago) link

Found this while perusing the information superhighway.


MaresNest, Monday, 14 March 2011 22:37 (nine years ago) link

been distantly aware of this dude for a really long time and finally picked something up last week and i'm pretty into it! that Left Handed Dream one frogbs mentioned. excellent investment! ($0.49 x 25% employee discount iirc)

arby's, Monday, 14 March 2011 22:45 (nine years ago) link

Playing the Piano is lovely

gravity tractor VS asteroid B612 (m coleman), Monday, 14 March 2011 23:56 (nine years ago) link

Just had a listen to Beauty again; yep, "Amore" is definitely a beautiful tune, but this album is really wonky as a whole - "Rose Music" just irritates me.

If you want to hear the difference between Sakamoto and Hosono, listen to both versions of the Okinawan folk song "Asatoya Yunta" (on the albums Beauty and Paraiso). Sakamoto's is very crisp, precise, and beautiful, while Hosono's is surreal and exotic, to the point where it sounds like the vocals were recorded backwards. I love both versions but Hosono's is really something special.

frogbs, Tuesday, 15 March 2011 14:04 (nine years ago) link

OoooOOOooooh this has "War Head" on it!! Really wish he wrote more songs like that!!!

frogbs, Wednesday, 16 March 2011 17:43 (nine years ago) link

yeah — it's like the loopiest songs from Multiplies with awesome synth sounds

corey, Wednesday, 16 March 2011 18:05 (nine years ago) link

one year passes...


Milton Parker, Tuesday, 10 July 2012 05:33 (seven years ago) link

That is a lineup worthy of international attention

Also think it's going to be the first time sakamoto and otomo yoshihide have collaborated


Milton Parker, Tuesday, 10 July 2012 05:41 (seven years ago) link

I mean, was

And I guess I mean: I'm surprised to have only found out about a kraftwerk / ymo concert the week after it happens

Milton Parker, Tuesday, 10 July 2012 06:01 (seven years ago) link

ummm, can we please get a DVD of this guys?

frogbs, Monday, 16 July 2012 21:11 (seven years ago) link

three months pass...

I hate to be negative, but I really dislike the piano versions of his older songs — it makes me think of when someone orchestrates the music from the Final Fantasy games. Chintzy and artificial the originals sounds might be, they're a huge part of why I enjoy this music so much, and piano versions just turn them into elevator music imo.

I dunno if you were referring to 1996 but I'm listening to it now and it's absolutely gorgeous. I think the artificiality kind of takes me out of it a bit - not on stuff like Ongaku Zukan or Neo Geo, but maybe on the albums past that. I had no idea "Bibo no Aozora" had such a haunting melody because it's covered up with dusty trip-hop drums and bad vocals.

frogbs, Tuesday, 13 November 2012 20:30 (seven years ago) link

find if you can /04 and /05, two great sakamoto-covers-himself-mostly-on-piano records

Brakhage, Wednesday, 14 November 2012 18:38 (seven years ago) link

five months pass...

'all star video: ryuichi sakamoto by nam june paik'


Milton Parker, Monday, 29 April 2013 19:07 (seven years ago) link

oh my god

puff puff post (uh oh I'm having a fantasy), Tuesday, 30 April 2013 01:56 (seven years ago) link

a few years back I saw a film that I think was soundtracked by Sakamoto, very soft and minimal synth and piano music, with the visuals being mostly black with white rectangles fading in and out based on the piano notes. I think. Ring a bell for anyone?

the kind of man who best draws girls' eyeballs (Merdeyeux), Tuesday, 30 April 2013 02:33 (seven years ago) link

one year passes...

wings of honneamise OST is really good man. esp "F A D E":

original bgm, Friday, 9 May 2014 04:36 (six years ago) link

Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence and Hidariude No Yume were also reissued with bonus discs of outtakes and unreleased stuff, and then there's been four volumes of the Year Book series (the latest volume of which, 1985-1989, has five discs). I think there's a LOT of stuff in the vault!

bamboohouses, Thursday, 25 October 2018 14:24 (one year ago) link

I love his commercial music!

brimstead, Thursday, 25 October 2018 14:45 (one year ago) link

listening to the Ongaku Zukan/Illustrated Musical Encyclopedia reissue now, thanks for the head's up! speaking of sakamoto:

.@0PN's next EP for @WarpRecords includes a remix by master composer @ryuichisakamoto https://t.co/FeSnqS0MxL

— Resident Advisor (@residentadvisor) October 25, 2018

Karl Malone, Thursday, 25 October 2018 17:36 (one year ago) link

four weeks pass...

Listening to this as well. A lot of it is basically his fusion album – Japanese melodies over Gaucho-ish horn arrangements, Fairlights pads and electronic percussion. It goes down pretty easily but has some nice 80s production touches. The first track was stuck in head this am and is a full-on YMO reunion cum big band. YMBB?

Naive Teen Idol, Thursday, 22 November 2018 14:46 (one year ago) link

This = Ongaku Zukan

Naive Teen Idol, Thursday, 22 November 2018 14:52 (one year ago) link

Also, listening to this makes me realize how long it took before I really *got* Sakamoto. I think my first exposure to him was on Sylvian’s first several records and Gentlemen Take Polaroids . I also read the entry about him in the Trouser Press Record Guide (an early bible for me) – the descriptions of his pedigree and Japanese-Western fusion experiments made his records sound incredibly exotic but very little of his catalogue (or YMO’s) was available then (early 90s).

When I finally heard Neo Geo, the followup to Ongaku and produced by Bill Laswell (Sakamoto was kind of the designated Fairlight guy in his Session All-Stars around that time – he’s the one noodling at the beginning of the last track on PiL’s Album), I was a little underwhelmed. It was the first of his own releases featuring big names, and while there were hints of what I would eventually love about him, it had fewer textural experiments and less ambition than I had hoped for. The same was largely true of Heartbeat, the two solid Sylvian collaborations aside.

It was only when I happened upon a cutout Dutch copy of Left Handed Dream and Technodelic at Borders Books and Music that I began to understand what the fuss was about. Yes, he can be overly sentimental at times but at its best the orchestral and Japanese formalism sounds fabulous juxtaposed with various electronic experiments.

Even still, it’s never been very easy to get a complete picture of his output – I’ve still never seen a physical copy of B-2 Unit and I literally just heard Illustrated/Ongaku this week, which are hugely important records in his catalogue.

Naive Teen Idol, Friday, 23 November 2018 17:27 (one year ago) link

five months pass...


this is extremely cool

frogbs, Saturday, 27 April 2019 04:07 (one year ago) link

maybe my favorite single of the year thus far actually

frogbs, Friday, 3 May 2019 14:45 (one year ago) link

ten months pass...

Over the last month I've been really diving into his solo works (with some mixed results). I've been delighted to find albums such as B-2 Unit and Esperanto have finally clicked with me. The original version of Illustrated Musical Encyclopedia was a revelation too. Async was the clear standout of his later works although there's still a lot I haven't listened to.

The biggest find is the Works I - CM compilation mentioned a couple of times on this thread by frogbs. That is an incredible collection of music that I've probably played ten times in the last week alone. Great tip on that one!

kitchen person, Thursday, 26 March 2020 17:29 (three months ago) link

Isn’t it though? Love it!

brimstead, Thursday, 26 March 2020 18:34 (three months ago) link

I honestly can't stop listening to it. I notice there is a volume two as well. Hopefully that's a similar quality as I'm going to need another fix soon.

kitchen person, Thursday, 26 March 2020 20:19 (three months ago) link

nice, thanks for bumping it!

Karl Malone, Thursday, 26 March 2020 20:23 (three months ago) link


It looks like Sakamoto is doing a live streaming performance next week on something called DTV, who also seem to be streaming a few other gigs of his from the last few years.

It being a Japanese streaming site, it appears to be completely locked down (I couldn't get anything to play even with a VPN) but someone here might have better luck than me?

bamboohouses, Friday, 27 March 2020 18:11 (three months ago) link

So the stream seems to be up and running here: https://pc.video.dmkt-sp.jp/ti/10000238
Working fine VPN'ed into Japan.

They're showing a 2011 gig now, apparently the live stream starts at 7pm Japan time. (11am here in London!)

bamboohouses, Thursday, 2 April 2020 09:37 (three months ago) link

one month passes...

hmm not sure if that worked... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X6td9KUZMfw

Hmmmmm (jamiesummerz), Monday, 18 May 2020 07:20 (one month ago) link

three weeks pass...


In this documentary, filmed while he was recording Ongaku Zukan, Sakamoto mentions that he has recorded 30 tracks for the album from which he will choose ten, so I'm guessing that's where the supplemental material for the reissue came from.

Maresn3st, Wednesday, 10 June 2020 16:37 (three weeks ago) link

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