Ichiko Aoba
Kamisori Otome


4.0
excellent

Review

by Aberf USER (8 Reviews)
October 19th, 2017 | 22 replies


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Less is More

The blueprint of an artist’s works all lie within their composition, where the potential of a song can ultimately be realized or end up squandered. Ichiko Aoba’s musical concept is simple and rather minimalistic. She emphasizes the simplicity and stretches it to the limit, creating music that lacks various instrumental elements in order to highlight the elements she chooses to employ. Kamisori Otome (Razor Maiden) is a showcase of brilliant composition, positioning an intertwining vocal harmony along the vibrating strings of the guitar, proving that less is more.

In the opener, ‘Fuwa Rin’, a gently strummed guitar seizes the listener, leading them into a room filled with Ichiko’s reverberating voice; “fuwari fuwari (floating gently along)” is a befitting line for the song itself. In each song, the melodies are fluttering, shifting between sections, creating warm, lush, and dreamy textures as if you are lying on top of a cloud. Ichiko is never hesitant to make the most intimate sounds, almost like she is whispering gently into your ear. She paints the blank album art with her music, transforming the mere shade of white from the album art into a colorful landscape, unfolding into the dreamy world of Ichiko Aoba.

Ichiko Aoba’s emergence as a singer-songwriter signifies not only her technical skills, but also her songwriting ability. She often evokes the vivid imagery of certain places, connecting her listeners to her own experience. In Kamisori Otome, the lines are often uplifting, lighthearted, and occasionally romantic, leaving not even a slightest room for depressiveness. Ichiko’s lyrics are usually hard to decipher. As they are written in Japanese, a normal translation wouldn’t help in order to truly understand the meaning behind them. With lines like, “Let me tell you my secret:/ If you get off three stations down from there/ You’ll hear the sound of the master key (translated),” one needs a certain level of understanding of the context and references behind the lyrics. But even without such context, the blissfulness within this album remains intact.

Kamisori Otome is a rather homogeneous piece of work, in terms of how it sounds and how it is structured. Though, thanks to its short, 27-minute, Kamisori Otome avoids overstaying its welcome, even transforming the homogeneity into something that works in its favour. The lack of experimentation and obvious variation is something that engenders the idea that this debut signifies the humble beginnings of Ichiko Aoba.



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user ratings (34)
3.8
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Aberf
October 19th 2017


2505 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Special thanks to



Frippertronics, who helped me write this.

Conmaniac, who kept giving me some sick advice.

Jack, who pretty much edit the entire review cuz I'm still suck at writing in Englando.

Ovrot
October 19th 2017


13304 Comments


pos'd

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
October 19th 2017


19108 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

The Sput-Folk Union makes its first and most important move.

heyadam
October 19th 2017


2634 Comments


I listen to her latest record pretty much every night. So good.

Digging: Sukekiyo - ADORATIO

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
October 19th 2017


16959 Comments


Good review, pos'd. This reads a bit weird, idk why, I could be wrong though: "The blueprint of an artist’s works all lie within their composition". I would have gone with "The blueprint of an artist’s work lies within their composition."

I haven't listened to this one yet. Better than Mahoboroshiya?

Digging: The Stargazer Lilies - Occabot

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
October 19th 2017


19108 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

very important happening http://www.sputnikmusic.com/list.php?listid=177724



internet greenwich village unite ~

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
October 19th 2017


19108 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

the world is not enough damn it

Aberf
October 19th 2017


2505 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

@dewinged, I'd say this is better than Mahoroboshiya

Aberf
October 19th 2017


2505 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

"contrary to popular belief, more is, quite literally, more"



Fake News

SandwichBubble
October 19th 2017


10492 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Niceee

Digging: Dirt - Never Mind Dirt - Here's the Bollocks

Aberf
October 19th 2017


2505 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Will this get another ghost neg? We will see.

ComeToDaddy
October 19th 2017


1805 Comments


Haven't jammed but I know it'll be good because Ichiko, sounds right up my alley. Nice work on the review bud, pos'd

Conmaniac
Contributing Reviewer
October 19th 2017


25013 Comments


hey wonderful stuff Abe, reads even better now! keep it up n pos

Frippertronics
Staff Reviewer
October 19th 2017


19108 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

The folk union v. The post punk confederation





Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
October 20th 2017


16959 Comments


"I'd say this is better than Mahoroboshiya" I'll take your word on it Abe, gotta check it out.

Aberf
October 20th 2017


2505 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Remember The Folk President, James K. Folk

Aberf
April 18th 2018


2505 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

A reminder that this has been on Spotify for a while, along with utabiko and origami.

brainmelter
September 15th 2018


6695 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

god all of this women's stuff is so great

Digging: Evigt Morker - 1

heyadam
September 15th 2018


2634 Comments


so close to her new record!

Aberf
September 15th 2018


2505 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5 | Sound Off

Once her voice clicks, it will never stop clicking.



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