Ryuichi Sakamoto (坂本龍一) – BTTB (Back To The Basics) (1998/2019) [FLAC 24bit/96kHz]

Ryuichi Sakamoto (坂本龍一) – BTTB (Back To The Basics) (1998/2019)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 01:14:08 minutes | 1,22 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download | Front Cover | © Milan Records

The remastered edition will feature liner notes from famed author Haruki Murakami. For the album’s reissue, Murakami writes: “Personal and intimate music – somebody (an anonymous somebody) sitting alone in front of the school piano early in the morning, weaving a melody, exploring harmonies. Music that gradually fills a space with high ceilings that contains the wafting presence of rain.”

“But music that leaves gaps where necessary. Once in a while, we need music like this and this way of being…no, perhaps all the time. We need it as much as we need hot black coffee at the break of dawn and a cat napping next to us in the afternoon.”

An acronym for Back to the Basics, the piano solo record was first issued in 1998 but has been difficult to find outside of Japan since. Comprised of 18 tracks, the LP was partly inspired by Claude Debussy and Erik Satie.

Recently, Sakamoto’s documentary Coda was released online via MUBI. He also published a playlist he made for his favourite restaurant in Japan via The New York Times, featuring tracks from Aphex Twin, Oneohtrix Point Never and more.

Best known for his work as a soundtrack composer (The Last Emperor, Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence) and a founding member of avant-rockers Yellow Magic Orchestra, composer Ryuichi Sakamoto gets “back to the basics” with this album. Of course, “the basics” here involve simple impressionist-inspired piano ditties that often sound more like diluted Vangelis than compositions from the cutting edge. But that’s OK, as long as you consider this as relaxing background music and not the shape of classical music’s future. BTTB was a hit in Japan in 1999, especially because of the single “Energy Flow” (a piece that Sakamoto admits was originally written as a commercial jingle). This release features one new track (“Reversing”) and plenty of other soothing, melodic works. (Jason Verlinde)

1. Opus 4:26
2. Sonatine 3:38
3. Intermezzo 3:45
4. Lorenz And Watson 3:56
5. Choral No. 1 2:27
6. Choral No. 2 2:05
7. Do Bacteria Sleep? 4:17
8. Bachata 8:14
9. Chanson 2:23
10. Distant Echo 5:53
11. Prelude 4:09
12. Sonata 3:31
13. Uetax 1:21
14. Aqua 4:30
15. Energy Flow 4:33
16. Snake Eyes 6:08
17. Tong Poo 5:03
18. Reversing 3:57

Ryuichi Sakamoto, piano
Digitally remastered