Ryuichi Sakamoto, BTTB Review
Ryuichi Sakamoto is a Japanese born composer, musician, singer, record producer, activist, writer, and actor. In the 70’s Sakamoto began his career as a session musician, producer, and arranger. He is the co-founder of the electronic-music trio Yellow Magic Orchestra. With his bandmates Haruomi Hosono and Yukihiro Takahashi, Sakamoto helped pioneer the genres of synth-pop, techno, and house music. Sakamoto also concentrated on his own music during that time period, releasing the experimental electronic fusion album, Thousand Knives and B-2 Unit. A track from the later, “Riot in Lagos,” has been said to have influenced the development of electro and hip-hop music. Sakamoto expansive career has many records and he has collaborated with many international artists such as: David Sylvian, Carsten Nicolai, Youssou N’Dour, and Fennesz among them. Sakamoto has pursued a wide variety of projects in different genres, ranging from electronic to classical, to world music. He composed music for the opening ceremony of the 1992 Barcelona Olympics. Sakamoto has won an Academy Award, a BAFTA, a Grammy, and two Golden Globe Awards. The films Merry Christmas and Mr. Lawrence marked his debut as both an actor and a film-score composer. Other successful works as a film composer include: The Last Emperor (1987), The Sheltering Sky (1990), Little Buddha (1993), and The Revenant (2015). On occasion, Sakamoto has also worked as a composer and a scenario writer on anime and video games.
Originally released in 1998, BTTB (an acronym for “Back To The Basics”) was a major breakthrough for Sakamoto. The album is comprised entirely of original solo piano pieces, both delicate and frantic, with deep impressionist-inspired roots. Since the nineties, BTTB has become a rare and hard-to-find album outside of Japan, but now it is being reissued in celebration of its 20th anniversary. BTTB – 20th Anniversary Edition includes all the tracks featured in the original release of the album remastered for the 21st century, including the major hit “Energy Flow.” Accompanying the leading single, “Energy Flow,” is a brand-new video created for the release of the 20th Anniversary Edition.
Lorenz And Watson
Choral No. 1
Choral No. 2
Do Bacteria Sleep?
Release Date: March 1, 2019
Sakamoto’s compositions define the essence that there is depth in simplicity. Each composition develops a central theme in a manner that is musical, but more importantly, it does so with only the essentials, a broader sense of minimalism combined with impressionism.