Index of Artists
Browse by Artist: SAWAKO
"New York/Tokyo-based Sawako is a musician, software designer, and multimedia artist whose multi-disciplinary works intermix and pollenate her music with inspiration ranging from nature, science, academia and poetic motion. Following releases on Anticipate and And/Oar,
is Sawako's 2nd release on 12k after the critically-acclaimed
in 2005. Her music is fragile and intimate, delicate, ephemeral and resonant.
is unmistakably Sawako but finds itself moving into much, much deeper territory than her previous works. Building on her past forays into experimental pop, she uses low and mid-frequency drones and soft, melodic highlights to shape beds of stripped-down, hypnotic and very linear tracks that fill the space in which they exist.
is more drone and tonal-based than Sawako's previous works. However, these gentle movements are punctuated by field recordings and acoustic instrumentation with cello provided by Jacob Kirkegaard and guitar by Radiosonde and Ryan Francesconi who also co-write two of the pieces on the album. In what has become a bit of a signature, Sawako lends her own voice to the ending lullaby, 'A Last Next.' These combinations produce rich results.
's diffuse and hazy soundscaping is Sawako's most mature work to date, relying less on her previous child-like melodies while remaining feminine and tender. She has come into her own after having established herself for a number of years as a New Yorker where she has tirelessly performed, studied and created as an important member of the city's electronic music community.
is packaged in a 6-panel digipack with photography throughout by Brooklyn-based artist and photographer Maki Kaoru."
This is Tokyo/NYC-based
's third full-length album,
, (a Japanese word which loosely translates to the state of being between sleep and waking).
presents a narrative universe of spacy, dreamy in-between-ness. Working through the woozy shift of the album's arc, one emerges at the other end with a return to a physical world decidedly of the present tense. Filled with contrast and dynamics,
firmly places Sawako at the forefront of the softly-colliding aspects of the digital and organic -- showing that she manages to hang in the fold between these worlds and access each with aplomb. Subtle electronics frame abstracted instrumental source material (vibraphone, guitar, cello, music box) and a variety of real-world sound (random objects, distant, disembodied voices and the occasional presence of Sawako's faintly-whispered vocals). With tracks like "Uta Tane" and "Far Away," she highlights the acoustic elements, rather than obscure the natural beauty of the sound for the sake of finding something new, which helps to further bring out the qualities that were quietly hiding beneath the surface. On songs like "Kira Kira" and the album closer "Tiny Tiny," Sawako uses chimes and tones that twinkle and pop, reminding one of hazy memories recalled through developed and reconfigured memory banks. Existing somewhere between the art gallery, the headphone commute and the bed-time ritual, Sawako's sound traverses boundaries such as digital minimalism, ambient and electro-acoustic -- arriving at a singular approach which feels both mental and tender -- restraining itself from going too far in either direction. Finding the melodies within the melodies, the fragments are assembled into soft, resonating compositions that combine all the fragility of a lone person playing toy instruments in their room with the technological prowess of skilled DSP processing. These qualities add up to a warm, moody, forward-minded balance, which defines Sawako's music.
Index of Artists