Exposé Online banner

Akiko's Cosmo Space — Julähsica to This Wonderful Day
(Musea MP-3308, 2015, CD)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2016-01-02

Julähsica to This Wonderful Day Cover art

Those who know Akiko Takahashi only from her role as drummer in various incarnations of the Japanese instrumental keyboard-heavy trio Ars Nova may be in for a big surprise on this, the first release of her solo project Akiko’s Cosmo Space. Julähsica means Cheers!, and indeed the twelve tunes herein are a joyful celebration of the wider range of Takahashi’s musical interests, not only as a drummer, but as a capable songwriter, singer and multi-instrumentalist, enlisting friends from her other band Marble Sheep (guitarist Ken Matsutani and bassist Rie Miyazaki), guitarist and singer Bill Berends from Mastermind, as well as guitarist Takashi Mizoguchi, upright bassist Yasushi Tanaka, tuba player Toru Takada, and ehru player Yoshimi Inoue, along with recording engineer Miho Muira. If one tries to come up with a convenient genre to classify all of what’s here, one will certainly be left scratching their head in bewilderment. Cosmic? Not really, at least in the sense of the cosmiche sound pioneered by folks like Tangerine Dream and Klaus Schulze. Is it Space Rock? There are definitely some strong space rock / psychedelic threads on several of the songs herewithin, but it’s only a small part of the overall vista. More than anything, this is in solid avant-garde progressive territory, very experimental and very Japanese. Takahashi sings on every track, sometimes supported by Berends and backing vocals from others, sung in “cosmo sweetie language,” and occasionally English and Japanese; in the booklet the lyrics for every song are translated to English and Japanese, and listeners steeped in Japanese progressive rock of the 80s and 90s should have no trouble with the vocal stylings. For her part, Takahashi plays (in addition to drum kit) keyboards, mallet percussion, tympani, all songwriting and production. All taken, this is an adventurous and playful romp through a fantastic array of musical styles and avant-garde arrangements.


Filed under: New releases, 2015 releases

Related artist(s): Bill Berends, Akiko Takahashi (Cosmo Space)

Latest news

2020-10-14
Audion Is Back in Business – Our esteemed colleague Alan Freeman has restarted Audion Magazine after a seven year hiatus. The new incarnation is available online on their Bandcamp site. Audion's history goes back to 1984, and included 58 issues up to 2013. Issue #59 is available now, and #60 is in the works. » Read more

2020-10-06
Romantic Warriors IV – Krautrock (Part 2) Is in the Works – Zeitgeist Media, the people who have brought us the great series of documentary films chronicling the history of progressive rock, are working on the second installment of their examination of German music. Krautrock 2 will focus on artists from Münich such as Guru Guru, Amon Düül II, Xhol Caravan, Kraan, Witthüser & Westrupp, and Popol Vuh. » Read more

2020-09-09
Simeon Coxe RIP – Simeon Coxe, best known for his experimental electronics in the band Silver Apples, has died at the age of 82. The band's 1968 debut album set the stage for both German electronic music and experimental punk music a decade later. Coxe died on September 8 from pulmonary fibrosis. » Read more

2020-09-05
Gary Peacock RIP – Legendary bassist Gary Peacock, veteran of many recordings and performances with Paul Bley, George Russell, Roland Kirk, Bill Evans, Tony Williams, and many more. » Read more

2020-07-22
Tim Smith RIP – Tim Smith, leader of the eccentric band Cardiacs, has died at the age of 59 after many years of health problems. Cardiacs was known for intense and complicated music that combined punk energy with the rhythmic and harmonic sophistication of progressive rock. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Richard Pinhas - Metatron – Whirling, twirling, swirling electronics. That is exactly what you hear from the opening track “Tikkun” on Richard Pinhas’ newest double CD release. Actually “Tikkun” is presented in four...  (2007) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues