i have the 1981 phew album, and the closed/circuit track has that subtle disco touch. very awkward, even a bit cold. and a few days ago i found an akiko yano track posted somewhere, ai suru hito yo. again, very slick, cosmopolitan disco, i think sylvian was involved in this. is this a whole east-meets-west anomaly? i want to hear more. pointers, anyone?
look out for yasuko agawa's la nights - basically a version of london town by light of the world , released on bluebird but avaliable on an lp called gravy , also an album called fine . very 'jones' girls style melt in your mouth loveliness.
Funnily enough I got Myspaced by Light Of The World the other day so I aksed them about LA Nights, apparently the producer actually used some of the sessions from the recording of London Town to make that record....
anyway... good jap disco... i guess you are referring to the akiko yano track posted on Bumrocks.com last week from the LP Ai Ga Nakucha Ne. If not then get that one!
This was produced by Ryuichi Sakamoto (who also worked a lot with david sylvian).
Sakamoto produced a lot of Japanese female vocalists in the 80s, but I haven't got names. Some were good, some awful. Sakamoto is extremely unfunky IMO (not in a bad way, just an observation).
Maybe some googling about sakamoto is in order? Japanese language skills are gonna help!
and yes edward, that was the track. a joint ymo/japan thing, as it turns out, beautiful stuff. funk was the last thing on my mind, actually. the phew track i mentioned really isn't disco at all but it has something neon about it.
Sakamoto had done some strange disco/synth pop/fusion records while in YMO, before B2-Unit. Not that I have heard the albums, but I have a very beautiful Sakamoto japanese double CD compilation ("US", ultimate solo) and the first 3 tracks are in this vein (this compilation is in chronological order, the fourth track is Riot in Laos if I remember well).
There is also a 3cd box out in Japan who collect all the '80 YMO tracks production for other singers, maybe you can Google those or search at HMV japan or amazon.co.jp and maybe can help....
....by the way very intrigued by the possibility of a "japan disco", let us know if you find something more about!!
i finally heard l.a. nights, mms. the girl's voice is a bit unsure but yes, it has that nights over egypt vibe. nice.
and francesco i've never been too convinced of sakamoto, i never understood why people worshiped at his altar. it's because of ymo, no? i heard a disc called 'early' and wasn't very impressed. but that was a long time ago, my standards have gone down since then! maybe that wasn't the right place to start. so i'll look for the things you mention, gracias.
Well, one can ask him Bruno but you know what he's into ...
Sakamoto's B- 2 Unit is the ticket , if one doesn't know it , one simply misses out on music history,
it's that good - esp. for bk then ... "Riot in Lagos" is on there , almost every cut does something good .
I hear B tho' on RS , but he has had plenty of excellent moments .
Weeded through a ton of his stuff that my wife's brother had and we snagged the
Chronological Collection '78 -'81 The Columbia Years but haven't even gotten to it !
In Japan , RS & YMO have some of the reverence that UK has for the Beatles ,
more 'collections' then Joy Division -
so yea you get alot of high high opinions on them and sic of them tooo but so it goes
I know you would like (or more) his '02 music for the NHK special on Tokyo's future "HENKAKKU NO SEIKI"
( and not so very bright) as i have mentioned in all the previous RS /Japanese music threads here
Also re: Phew , not sure i know the record you mentioned earlier but her record with the Berliners
( Alex Borsig , C Haas, Jaki L ) was pretty great musically , her um, singing takes some getting used to - and then some
not strictly disco, but you might want to check out sandi & the sunsetz - immigrants, from 1981, another ymo endorsed record (including a couple of sylvian penned tunes, think he does backing vox and plays synth on a couple of tunes as well). i get the impression that with alot of this stuff it's haruomi hosomo who did more of the trackier disco tunes, while yukihiro takahashi seems more interested in song-based new wave stuff, and sakamoto is generally just all over the shop sound wise.
Coming in from Bruno's comment on the Around the World thread. Has anyone got anything more this stuff. Im only familiar with LA Nights and that melts me everytime . . .
miharu koshi's bara no yakai is great, much more slick and studioish, though. haruomi hosono seems to be the common name to this stuff, his production credits are vast and a lot to sift through obsessively.
miharu koshi "scandal night" (fretless + 808 + cocktail party drama)
sandii "zoot kook" (acid filter tweaks + laser noises + understated breathy diva + unbearably beautiful chorus)
akiko yano "rose garden" (sounds like a super hyped up gamelan led talking heads with weird pitch shifted vocoder interjections)
jun togawa "yumemiru yakusoku" (middle eastern tinged synth pop w/ that snare on the 3rd steppers beat that hosono was so into at the time)
mari nakamoto "lover come back to me" (ymo backed cover of the jazz standard)