Midori Takada & Masahiko Sato - Lunar Cruise LP+CD
Following the successful reissue of Midori Takada's Through The Looking Glass, We Release Whatever The Fuck We Want present another reissue from the Japanese percussionist Midori Takada in the form of Lunar Cruise, her collaboration with jazz pianist Masahiko Satoh. Originally released on CD in 1990 through the Japanese division of Epic, Lunar Cruise finally gets a reissue on vinyl, further carving out her legacy of producing forward-thinking albums in her fascinating discography.
Takada finds herself on marimba and a minimal percussion set-up with Satoh dialing in the quintessential, radiant tones from the Yamaha DX7II. Like the aforementioned Through The Looking Glass, Takada weaves a vibrant tapestry of ambient melody and light rhythm, fusing traditional African and Asian percussion with jazz, new age and minimalism. The album also features guest appearances from Yellow Magic Orchestra's Haruomi Hosono on bass and Kazutoki Umezu on saxophone and clarinet. Takada's syncopated melodies spiral tautly from her marimba, light bells and small cymbals, prescient of the synthetic (albeit far less spooky) constructs that Peter Christopherson would produce in the final Coil records and as the Threshold House Boys Choir.
Even though billed as a collaboration, Lunar Cruise highlights the exotically tinged rhythms from Takada, with Satoh comfortable in his role to provide a suitably unobtrusive touch on the electronics. "A Vanished Illusion" brightly shines with its Arabesques for Umezu's saxophone that whirl around Takada's spry, rhythmic spine. "In 'D'" eponymously describes the key to this interlocking arrangement, though it does distantly echo the patterned brilliance of Terry Riley's In C.
Sourced from the original studio masters, the vinyl package also contains a bonus CD containing the full album plus extra track "Iron Paradise" and new liner notes, containing a recent interview with Takada and Satoh.