Schubert/String Quintet (Alban Berg Quartett/Schiff, 1982)

The Austrian composer of the late Classical and early Romantic eras, Franz Schubert's "String Quintet in C major" D.956 (EMI). His final chamber work composed in his last days. A long (around 50 minutes) and large-sized piece for string quintet plus the second cello, with well-developed bass oart, like a string orchestra. Featurng lots of flowing melodies filled with pathos and lyricism. The tranquil and sublime second movement, including intensely emotional central part, is famous. Performed by Alban Berg Quartett and Heinrich Schiff (cello).

String Quintet


Bob Dylan/Blood on the Tracks (1975)

An American singer-songwriter and poet who had worked in folk and rock genres since his debut in recording in 1962 and had a great influence on popular music in general, Bob Dylan's fifteenth studio album (#1 on the US album charts. #4 on the UK album charts). Noted as his greatest album in the 1970s, featuring acoustic-based band sound centering on Dylan's vocals, guitar and harmonica, and including piano, organ, mandolin, 12-string guitar and pedal steel guitar, explicitly confessional lyrics on the breakdown of his marriage, and lots of quiet and melodic songs. Includes the single "Tangled Up in Blue" (#31 on the US charts). All the songs written, composed and produced by Bob Dylan.

Blood on the Tracks

| Music: D |


Sekiri/Sekiri Shoki Ongenshu+2 (Sekiri Early Recordings+2) (2015/1985-1989)

A compilation (25 tracks) which includes the early recordings in the late 1980s by the rock band Sekiri (means "dysentery" in Japanese), the pioneer of the Japanese all-female punk bands, led by Miyu (vocals) and formed in Kyoto in 1983, who had an influence on following bands such as Lolita No.18. Released by Alchemy Records in 2015 as a reissue of the remastered "Sekiri Shoki Ongenshu" (released by Youth Inc. in 2013), adding two tracks from a cassette source. The music is based on dark and aggressive hardcore punk, but it also features pop songs with languorous feeling. "Ring-Ring" is a nihilistic hardcore punk tune covering Finger5's idol pop "Koi no Dial 6700 (Love's Dial 6700)".

Sekiri Shoki Ongenshu+2


Patty Waters/Patty Waters Sings (1965) *

An American jazz vocalist who is known for her free jazz recordings in the 1960s for the ESP-Disk label and had a huge influence on Yoko Ono and Diamanda Galás, Patty Waters's debut album (ESP-Disk). The first half consists of seven short dark, tranquil ballads featuring her whispery and smoky voices, influenced by Billie Holiday, with her piano accompaniment. The latter half is "Black is the Color of My True Love's Hair" (about 14 minutes), which is her best known recording. It is an avant-garde cover of a traditional folk song and it is influenced by Albert Ayler's free jazz. It features her vocal improvisations including moans, whispers, and screams, and piano, piano harp, bass and percussion. A good dark avant-garde jazz album which is beautiful like contemporary music.

Patty Waters Sings


Schubert/Wanderer-Fantasie, Schumann/Fantasie (Pollini, 1973)

Includes two piano solo works (fantasies) of the Romantic, the Austrian composer of the late Classical and early Romantic eras, Franz Schubert's "Wandererfantasie" (Wanderer Fantasy) Op.15 and the German Romantic composer, Robert Schumann's "Fantasie" Op.17 (Deutsche Grammophon). Schubert's "Wandererfantasie" is a free-form fantasy of four movements in sonata style. A magnificent and technical piece featuring lots of arpeggios. Its second movement has a quotation from the theme of his Lied "Der Wanderer". Schumann's "Fantasie" is one of his greatest works for piano solo. A splendid and passionate filled with romanticism. A theme of Beethoven's song cycle "An die ferne Geliebte (To the distant beloved)" is quoted in the coda of the first movement. The crystal-clear performances by Maurizio Pollini.

Schubert/Wanderer-Fantasie, Schumann/Fantasie


Simon and Garfunkel/Bridge Over Troubled Water (1970)

An American folk-rock duo debuted in 1964, Simon and Garfunkel's fifth and final studio album (#1 on the US/UK/Australian/Finnish/French/German/Japanese/Dutch/Norwegian/Swedish album charts). Includes singles, "The Boxer" (#7 on the US chart. #6 on the UK charts), "Bridge Over Troubled Water" (#1 on the US/UK charts), "Cecilia" (#4 on the US charts) and "El Condor Pasa (If I Could)". "The Boxer" is a beautiful folk rock ballad. The title track "Bridge Over Troubled Water" is a gospel-influenced song featuring its dynamic development, with only piano accompaniment at first, and with rhythm section and strings since the third chorus. "El Condor Pasa (If I Could)" is a cover of the song written by the Peruvian composer Daniel Alomia Robles based on traditional Andean folk tunes, with English lyrics, and it uses the Argentine group Los Incas' recording. "So Long, Frank Lloyd Wright" is a song in the bossa nova style. "Bye Bye Love" is a cover of the Everly Brothers' hit song (live recording).

Bridge Over Troubled Water

| Music: S |


Haruomi Hosono/omni Sight Seeing (1989)

His thirteenth solo album (Epic). A good album of electronica/synth pop in the world music style including the elements of Japanse folk song, Arabic pop (rai), Latin music and ambient music like Brian Eno. "Esashi" includes a quotation from the Japanese folk song "Esashi Oiwake". "Andadura" is an Arabic pop. "Caravan" is a cover of the exotic jazz standard number composed by Duke Ellington and Juan Tizol. "Laugh-Gas" is a track in acid-techno style featuring Roland's rhytm machine TR-808. A Tunisian singer-songwriter, Amina Annabi sings with her arabic vocals in "Andadura" and "Laugh-Gas". The lyrics are Japanese, English, French and Arabic.

omni Sight Seeing


King Oliver's Creole Jazz Band/The Complete Set (1997/1923-1924)

A two-CD set (41 tracks) which includes the recordings in 1923-1924 by King Oliver, an American jazz cornet player and bandleader who is one of the most important figures in early Jazz, also known for his pioneering use of mutes in jazz, and his band, Creole Jazz Band (Retrieval). The band performances including cornet, clarinet, saxophone, trombone, piano, double bass, drums, and banjo. Featuring his protégé, Louis Armstrong on second cornet. Accessible and comfortable music featuring collective, polyphonic improvisation and solos in a light rhythm. "Canal Street Blues" and "Dipper Mouth Blues" are famous tunes. One of the essential recordings of the original New Orleans jazz. The 1923 session is the first record by black (African-American) musician.

The Complete Set


Japan/Quiet Life (1979)

An English new wave band formed in 1974 in Catford, South London, Japan's third studio album (#53 on the UK album charts). After the transition from their earlier guitar-based, glam rock/funk-tinged style to the synth pop style in the single "Life in Tokyo" (1979), a collaboration with Giorgio Moroder, they established their distinctive artistic style of synth pop in this album, featuring David Sylvian's sticky vocals with baritone voice and Mick Karn's undulating fretless bass. European style sound closer to Roxy Music and David Bowie at "Low" (1977) . The title track "Quiet Life" was released as a single in Japan in 1979, in Germany and The Netherlands in 1980, and in the UK in 1981 (#19 on the UK charts). "All Tomorrow's Parties" is a cover of the song by The Velvet Underground and Nico.

Quiet Life

| Music: J |


Sarah Vaughan/Sarah Vaughan with Clifford Brown (1954)

An American jazz vocalist born in 1924 in Newark, New Jersey, known for her beautiful voice of wide range, Sarah Vaughan's album recorded in 1954 with trumpeter Clifford Brown (EmArcy). Originally titled "Sarah Vaughan", and later re-issued under the title of "Sarah Vaughan with Clifford Brown". You can enjoy every minute of her enchanting singing pop standards, such as "Lullaby of Birdland" (composed by George Shearing), "April in Paris" (composed by Vernon Duke), "Embraceable You" (composed by George Gershwin), and "September Song" (composed by Kurt Weill), with her ever-changing voice in her mature period. "Lullaby of Birdland" including scat is famous as her excellent performance.

Sarah Vaughan with Clifford Brown