Nowadays for us who are staying at home, it seems to be all about chilling out. This includes binge watching our favourite tv shows, reading all the books we never got to read, and heck people are even spending day and night living a virtual islander life with all these other mad animals (yes you know what game I am talking about). I don’t blame anyone though because amidst this extremely difficult time for everyone, the most important thing we all got to do is to take care of ourselves both mentally and physically! DON’T WORRY, I will spare you from having to read yet another post about this current global situation… Instead I will be presenting to you another and possibly the best way to #CHILLOUT right now and that is listening to the amazing ambient music composer/songwriter – Hiroshi Yoshimura.
Hiroshi Yoshimura was a well-known ambient music composer in Japan where his sounds consist of gentle electronic melodies with hints of beautiful samples from nature. Now I never used to be into instrumental music because well… I simply thought they were boring. However, when I first got introduced to Mr. Yoshimura, his music reminded me a lot of childhood. What I mean by this is, his songs have got that dreamy and nostalgic vibe bringing back snippets of old Japanese animations that I used to watch as a kid and yes you’ve probably guessed, Studio Ghibli. Soft noises created by the piano, flute and organ(?), as well as the delicate wind-chime sounds makes me feel like I am slowly scrolling through the Sagano Bamboo Forest which resides at Kyoto, Japan on a sunny breezy day. Now hopefully I can bring you onto this journey with me through some of my favourites from Hiroshi Yoshimura.
First of all, I’d like to share a song from my most favourite album of his – “Over the Clover” from Flora (1987). The song immediately brings you into an immersive environment by a short repetition of these crisp, vibrant, and clear notes followed by a melodic echo-y sound which I find this combination to be very beautiful and well thought out. Unlike songs from his other albums, I feel like Flora is definitely more uplifting and bright whereas others are more mellow and deep. Even on a rainy day in Scotland, listening to this brightens up not only my mood but also my surroundings.
Now comes the exciting part! For those who are also Yoshimura fans, you will probably know that Light in the Attic recently announced a reissue of Yoshimura’s Green album from 1986 and has also been released on Spotify! To be very honest with you, as an avid Spotify user I had a lil ‘eeeeeek’ moment because now not only can we listen to one album offline, we can listen to TWO! “Sheep” from Green (1986) is truly a rollercoaster ride expect this one is SUPER chill and relaxing. The song begins with these scenic ocean waves sounds slowly transcending into these beautiful organ-like chords. What I really enjoy about Yoshimura’s work is that although his music is ambient and mostly melodic, he always add in these very distinctive notes making his music pop and come to life, as you can hear throughout this song.
Last but not least is “Blink” from Music for Nine Postcards (1982) which is an example of the more simplistic and minimal sounds from Hiroshi Yoshimura. If you think ambient music cannot get slower than the previous two recommendations then this album will exceed your expectations. Whenever I listen to this number I genuinely feel like time and the world around me has paused. Just like the album cover, I feel like me and my life is a piece of blank paper, not in a way where I feel like I’m nothing but rather feels like a clear canvas where it prepares us for further improvement and to bring more creativity and ideas into our lives, almost like a feeling of no limitations if you know what I mean? Okay, maybe I’m getting way too deep here. I also listen to this when I’m playing league, it’s honestly like a magical cure to getting tilted.
Anyways, I hope you enjoyed this new piece and managed to find some new music to chill to during these at-home times. Recently whenever I have the desire to write something new for this blog I seem to always be stuck at the first paragraph and end up feeling unmotivated. I think I revamped the layout of this blog over half a year ago but still couldn’t put something out so I am considering this to be good progress! Again, just a reminder – take care of yourselves and continue to be mindful 🙂
From me to you,
K M x