agraph (Kensuke Ushio) Interview | ‘the shader’ & Electronic Melancholy

Kensuke Ushio is on the verge of becoming a household name in the western anime fandom, thanks to his exhilarating and sensitive contributions to numerous modern anime classics’ original soundtracks, namely Space Dandy (as part of LAMA), Ping Pong, A Silent Voice and the recently released Devilman: Crybaby.

However, Ushio already had a decade-old alter ego of sorts in his stage name agraph, which he adorns when producing and releasing his own solo albums, exploring the pure, unadulterated creative impulse within him. ‘the shader‘ is his third solo electronica album release.

The following is a translation of the interview conducted with the artist by Natalie Music.

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Funomenal Rear-view Contemplation: Best of Film & Game Music 2017

You know…I went into starting this post with snippets of ideas for the intro: something snappy, a humorously depressing comment on 2017, and end it with a cheesy flavour of hope. But instead…I ended up with this.

I think I’ve sampled more albums than I ever did in 2017: more varieties of artists both old favourites and new discoveries, an increasingly diverse set of classical repertoires, genres and origins. That comes with good news and bad news, and I think the good news is kinda obvious already. But the bad news: I’ve listened to less albums COMPLETELY than the past two years, since there’s always something I want to jump onto prematurely.

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Princess Principal Composers Interview | Ryo Takahashi (Void_Chords), Yuki Kajiura

Princess Principal was an action-adventure highlight of Summer 2017, and a big part of this resonance with the fandom was undoubtedly the high-octane musical identities afforded to the production by its arranger/composer duo of rising star Ryo Takahashi (ACCA: 13-ku Kansatsu-ka, Classroom of the Elite), and prolific veteran Yuki Kajiura (Kara no Kyoukai, Fate/Zero, Sword Art Online, ERASED).

The following is a translation of the interview conducted with the two composers by Natalie Music.

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Sound Design of Woman Called Fujiko Mine with Sayo Yamamoto (Director) and Naruyoshi Kikuchi (Music Producer)

A short greetings, readers! This is not a blog post written by yours truly, unfortunately, but I did sorta have a hand in making this interview translation happen, and it deals with a subject that I’m evidently passionate about, as well as being shamefully underappreciated by fans (AND a fair share of creators/producers if I dare say so) of film & animation.

In addition to co-funding the translation by the ever so reliable karice, I was happy to lend my help on a few technical translations of musical terms.

Wave Motion Cannon

Karice avatarThis interview was posted on the website Tower on December 19, 2012. Originally published in intoxicate vol.101 (December 10, 2012). The interview has been translated by Twitter user @karice67 and cofunded by @NaChiKyoTsuki97 © 2017 Wave Motion Cannon


You can support the translators who you see on WMC by pledging on Patreon!

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Lupin III: The Woman Called Fujiko Mine has attracted lots of attention as the first Lupin III TV series in 27 years. The individual responsible for its soundtrack is Naruyoshi Kikuchi. Though this is a spinoff with Fujiko Mine as the heroine and protagonist, it is precisely because the maestros Takeo Yamashita and Yuji Ohno gave birth to “Lupin Jazz” that we are now keen to find out about the new blood that Kikuchi, the maverick of the Jazz world, has poured into the mix. And on the other hand, we have series director Sayo Yamamoto. Tag-teaming with…

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Funomenal Rear-view Contemplation: Best of Film & Game Music 2016

And to think I don’t have to write any more words about film music for the rest of my life…”You’ve written more than enough“, some might say.

NOPE.

Like I always say, there’s something inherently magical about film music. I wouldn’t miss it for all the unoriginality (I prefer the word ‘homage’) that it so proudly displays at every glorious turn or twist. So. Let us have our 7 minutes and 38 seconds of pure bliss, away from the politics, away from 2017. Let’s go back to 2016 for just another few moments.

(Yes. You can pretty much guess my winners from just reading the above paragraph.)

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The Sound of Christmas | The Music, The Spirit and the Magnificent

You know that time of the year, when suddenly jingle bells (the actual thing…and that damn song) started appearing in every shopping mall you visit? The television channels starts to air cheesy Christmas-themed comedies and cartoons every 7pm (I think this is the 9th year in a row I remember seeing Elf staring Will Ferrell getting a re-airing on TV), and you start to overhear Michael Bublé-performed Christmas carols being played in car radios as you strolled along your home street.

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A Melodic Comparison: Film Music’s Many Invaluable Personalities | Joe Hisaishi, John Powell

(Page numbers are below the ‘related articles’ section. Please excuse its odd placing, as WordPress doesn’t allow me to alter its position.)

Note: this publication is a highly extensive and lengthy endeavour that invite readers to refer back to for analytical ideas. In other words, it is written with a sea of wiki-style links to additional readings, clips and videos, endless subject matters, tangents and covers a lot of ideas. I recommend that you bookmark this page for future reference, whenever you feel the need for some creative writing ideas, or just some music-based observations you find difficulty in analysing or putting your ideas into words. I hope my efforts help you in that regard.

A few months ago, I went on a tweeting rampage:

(You can find the entire tweet thread by clicking the time & date stamp.)

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Funomena Picks: Best of Anime 2015 | Part III

For my third and final venture into the best of anime 2015, I determine the overall winners of the year.

Below are my meticulously considered titles and studios that will be competing for and winning the Funomenon Globe (Took me 5 seconds to come up with this name…so it’s AWESOME. Design & 3D render pending.) for Best TV & Film Soundtracks, Top-Performing Studio and Favourite Anime of 2015.

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