Boomkat Product Review:
Sakamoto’s standout 1985 blast of rhythmic invention and hallucinatory FM synthesis is mercifully reissued by WEWANTSOUNDS, who revisit its extraordinary and obsessive electronic detail.
Abetted for this one by Arto Lindsay on electric guitar and the fleet hands of Yas-Kaz on percussion, Sakamoto was really hitting his experimental stride in 1985, in the years after crafting some of the ‘80s most enduring popular synth recordings with ‘Merry Christmas Mr. Lawrence’ soundtrack and collaborations with David Sylvian. As its name suggests, ‘Esperanto’ sees Sakamoto both literally and metaphorically inspired by the “constructed international auxiliary language” that was invented in 1987.
Nearly 100 years later, the album witnesses the Japanese genius drawing linguistic and musical parallels between Esperanto’s semantic systems and vernacular structures and the peculiar, modernist languages of electronic music in a way that beautifully embellished and dovetailed with ideas of 4th world possibility, and likewise lucidly resonates thru today, especially in the syncretic systems-based aesthetics and intentions of compositions by Autechre, Christos Chondropoulos or Visible Cloaks, for example. Call it ambient, synth music, proto-IDM, or whatever you like; it’s just proper dream music for dreamers and electronic romanticists, and now readily available, resplendent in remastered form for optimal absorption in its ultra-vivid interraforms.