Exposé Online banner

Nobukazu Takemura — Hoshi no Koe
(Thrill Jockey thrill094, 2001, CD)

by Jon Davis, Published 2001-07-01

Hoshi no Koe Cover artAfter working in fields as diverse as minimalism (on the Reich Remixed album), jazz, and techno, Nobukazu Takemura presents an album of music that fuses a wide range of styles into something all his own. Takemura has graduated from turntablist to modern composer, creating his music primarily with computers, and the result is like nothing I’ve heard before. The long track “Anemometer” combines floating circular keyboard lines with percussion parts that range from simplistic to chaotic, like an Aphex Twin or Squarepusher song played simultaneously with Philip Glass. “Honey Comb” is little more than a series of bleeps and squawks and static that manages to have a structure and make musical sense. This is immediately followed by “White Sheep and Small Light,” a charming bit of chamber music for flutes, clarinet, strings, and marimba. “Sign” starts with more non-musical sounds, but integrates them into a drum loop and adds keyboard sequences and an electronic voice. This is electronic music from another planet, bearing little relation to earthly techno. Hoshi No Koe, I’m told, translates as Notes from a Starry Sky, an appropriate title for such otherworldly music. Parts of it could be considered difficult listening, but on the whole, there’s a childlike feeling to Takemura’s creations that never ceases to amaze me. This is one of the best electronic albums I’ve heard in some time, and absolutely unique, proving once and for all that programming is a valid way to put sounds together, and needn’t sacrifice emotion.

Filed under: New releases, Issue 22, 2001 releases

Related artist(s): Nobukazu Takemura

Latest news

2017-11-16
Celebrate 10 Years of Fruits de Mer – As a special celebration for a decade of cool vinyl releases, our friends at Fruits de Mer records have prepared a limited edition reissue of an album by the first band ever to appear on the label: Schizo Fun Addict. The band is known for unusual release strag » Read more

2017-11-02
Mega Dodo Presents New Charity Album – Our friends at Mega Dodo have put together a lovely compilation of their artists performing new arrangements of nursery rhymes, and all the profits from sales of the album will benefit Save the Children. It features a number of artists we've covered. » Read more

2017-10-18
Phil Miller RIP – Sad word reaches us today of the passing of another of the great musicians of the Canterbury Scene — guitarist Phil Miller. His distinctive sound added greatly to Matching Mole, Hatfield and the North, and National Health, and he also contributed to albums by Caravan, Dave Stewart & Barbara Gaskin, and many others. He was 68. » Read more

2017-10-13
Moonjune to Distribute Tony Levin's Back Catalog – It has been announced that Moonjune will now handle distribution for Tony Levin's catalog of releases. These great albums will now be a bit easier to get hold of, so check out the site and see what you're missing. The veteran of King Crimson and Stick Men worked with a host of great players on these albums, and we've reviewed most of them over the course of the years. » Read more

2017-09-26
Bandcamp Shines Light on Niches We Like – Bandcamp has developed into one of the best places to discover new music, and even a lot of old music is showing up there. In addition, their staff has been producing periodic articles spotlighting some interesting stylistic areas. On 20 September, they published one called "The New Face of Prog Rock" which bears checking out. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Bi Kyo Ran - Deep Live – The word on the street is that this Japanese combo is the Far East answer to King Crimson, circa Red. Although occasional Frippisms abound in the guitar parts, I think they more closely resemble a...  (1996) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues