Tag Archives: Japan

Masayoshi Fujita – Stories (2012)

Masayoshi Fujita - Stories (2012)

It’s always exciting to find a style of music that I haven’t heard before, it reminds me why I undertake such “auralnautical explorations”, and part of the reason behind my starting this blog in the first place.

Here, we find ourselves listening to solo vibraphonist Masayoshi Fujita, Japanese, but based in Berlin.

The vibraphone has a beautiful timbre, with a fantastic ringing resonance upon each note, which gives one the sensation of dreaming.

Here, Fujita guides us through eight Stories told to us through modern ambient composition by his excellent playing. Each track has an evocative texture bringing to life the Stories that he tells. Story Of A Waterfall I. & II. actually sounds like the flowing of water over rocks, and as one could stare at a waterfall, mesmerised by the tracks of the descending water, one could also listen to this track and do the same. Snow Storm is similar, flakes flutter and fall, and we are powerless but to be enveloped by the storm as it approaches, gently at first, but quickly overwhelming.

Stories is a mesmerising and delicately enchanting album.

Favourite tracks: Snow Storm, Story Of A Waterfall I. & II., Memories Of The Wind.

Spotify link: Masayoshi Fujita – Stories
Sneak peak: 

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Shugo Tokumaru – In Focus? (2013)

Shugo Tokumaru - In Focus (2013)

Shugo Tokumaru is a multi-instrumentalist from Japan. In Focus? is his sixth album, but the first by him that I have listened to.

There is a certain twee charm to this album which I would place somewhere between quirky indie-pop and psychedelic folk. The majority of tracks have a childlike innocence to them, with instantly catchy melodies but with a lot of added experimental, off piste diversions; there some very interesting musical interludes, as well, with glockenspiel on Gamma, what sounds like a detuned ukulele on Mubyo, what could be the theme tune to some crazy Japanese kid’s TV programme on Pah-Paka, and (possibly sequenced) guitars on Micro Guitar Music.

Most tracks are great with plenty going on to keep the ear interested; a couple of the tracks, to me, don’t live up to this standard, but I must stress that this is likely to be because, like Ord Gate, they are more lyrically focused tracks and, as they are sung in Tokumaru’s native Japanese which I don’t understand, this is my shortcoming and not his.

Overall, very enjoyable.

Favourite tracks: Call, Helictite (LeSeMoDe), Down Down

Bandcamp link: http://shugotokumarumusic.bandcamp.com/album/in-focus
Spotify link: Shugo Tokumaru – In Focus?
Sneak peak: