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akiko yano-to ki me ki cd (wewantsounds)

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akiko yano: to ki me ki

Wewantsounds continues its Akiko Yano reissue series with the release of the singer's third studio album To Ki Me Ki, recorded in New York and released in 1978 in Japan. It follows her cult Iroha Ni Konpeitou LP and keeps the similar blend of Japanese pop and New York funk found in the latter. To Ki Me Ki features such musicians as Rick Marotta, Will Lee, and David Spinozza, and also programmer Hideki Matsutake who would soon join the YMO with Akiko. To Ki Me Ki is reissued outside of Japan for the first time, remastered in Tokyo by revered engineer Mitsuo Koike and featuring original artwork by Tsutomu Murakami with four-page color insert and new liner notes by Paul Bowler. 1978 was a key year for Japanese Music. Yellow Magic Orchestra was about to release their ground-breaking debut album. All musicians involved had also released key solo albums that year (Sakamoto with Thousand Knives, Takahashi with Saravah and Hosono with Paraiso) and Akiko Yano (who would soon join the YMO on tour for their first international tour) was no exception and came with To Ki Me Ki. Two key additions come in the form of synth programmers Hideki Matsutake who had worked with Isao Tomita and who would soon be YMO's unofficial fourth member and Roger Powell, a Robert Moog protege who was playing with Todd Rundgren's Utopia group at the time. Together Akiko and her musicians concocted a superb mix of diverse styles ranging from funk ("Two on the Stage" and "To Ki Me Ki"), Latin "Uo Sao" featuring Marrero's distinctive percussion in addition to slower songs such as "Kodomo Tachi" and "Andante Cantabile," all showcasing Akiko's beautiful piano playing, unique singing and unparalleled knack for composing catchy songs. "To Ki Me Ki" is a key works in Akiko's discography just before she embarked in the YMO adventure and recorded her landmark album Tadaima in a radical shift of sound.

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