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This is the archive for July 2009

Sunday, July 05, 2009

Looking back a bit in my blog, I found out that it's been a while since I translated some Japanese song. This week, I bought the last album of Shikata Akiko, "Harmonia" and it's definitely fascinating. On the CD leaflet, she writes "There's a rhythm floating in the soul of this planet shining of its life", and that's the introduction of one of the most ambitious projects ever undertaken by a musician. I have not the talent to say if she succeed or not, but for sure, listening all the songs from the first to the last, you can tell a story of nature, mankind, hope, despair, darkness and light.

The last song of the album, "Harmonia", is the synthesis and conclusion of the work. That song is "all". I couldn't fit it in a frame, because its everything the music has produced up to date. It's lyric, and epic, yet simple and warm. It has some Arabian music remembrance, but it sticks with European traditions, it's Celtic and Gypsy, it's classical and modern, it remembers centro-american popular songs, and has something vaguely African. You could add a Dijeridoo in the frame, and it would be just perfect. And of course, it's so Japanese...

The lyrics are possibly not outstanding poetry, yet they fit the frame so perfectly; they are just telling you what the music is already telling, in another language. This song is not just words-over-music, or music-over-words as sometimes happens. It's words-and-music.