Shinichi Osawa Talks Kitsuné EP, Collaborations and Noodles

Shinichi Osawa

Tokyo DJ/producer/musician Shinichi Osawa can never be accused of resting on his laurels. After blazing trails with his downtempo house project Mondo Grosso and releasing influential albums like 1997’s Closer (whose title track featured Vince Montana and Philly Sound Strings), Osawa took a bold step on his 2007 album The One, showcasing an uptempo dance floor sound. Since then he’s kept the momentum going through a spate of productions and remixes. His new offering, “Breaking Through the Night,” finds him joining forces with Parisian dance indie Kitsuné. The release arrives on the heels of his “Dope427” collaboration with Benny Bennasi, appearance on fellow Tokyo mixer Towa Tei’s “18,” a housey re-rub of Japanese diva Alison Valentine’s “Curious” and an insanely energetic remix of Duck Sauce’s “It’s You.” Whether he’s making music for home listening, the dance floor or commercials, Osawa says he’s always avoiding musical boundaries. “I don’t particularly intend to set bounds with my music so I want to continue to create in a variety of musical styles as I feel.”

Jump to read the interview in Japanese 日语翻译可以在这里

The consumption tax goes up this week in Japan and everyone’s busy shopping. Have you made any last-minute studio purchases to save some yen?
Shinichi Osawa: It wasn’t so much about the tax hike but I purchased a modular synthesizer and Dopefer’s DA-100 that I’d been thinking to get.

Let’s talk music. You’ve been down many musical paths during your career and it seems like you’re really concentrating on tracks for the dance floor. “Breaking Through The Night” is a bumping track that fits the bill. Is there anything in particular that influenced its disco-house sound?
It’s not influenced by anything in particular. It is one of the dance tracks that I came up with while I was working through ideas.

How did you connect with Kitsuné? Are more releases planned with the label? Maybe an album?
My relationship with Kitsuné started about ten years ago through my friend. We held a party together and released CDs in Japan, stuff like that. It’s one of my favorite labels so I’d like to continue releasing something new with them.

Looking at your body of work, The One is a really special album and the first one where you used your full name. Your cover of “Star Guitar” by The Chemical Brothers is a personal favorite. How do you look back on that remix and album? Was it a turning point?
I think that was linked with the dawn of the electro era. I still like “Star Guitar.” The Chemical Brothers influenced me quite a lot.

You’ve been busy collaborating with other artists. You’re featured on Towa Tei’s “18” and cut “Dope427” with Benny Benassi. How did these musical unions come about?
Regarding the track with Benny, I actually produced the track in 2008 for my own album, but I ended up not using it. Then, recently, Benny pulled the track out and told me he wanted to use it for his stuff; that’s how it happened. I produced it in his studio in Italy so I remember well. Regarding the one with Tei, we’ve worked together before and so after quite some time I got this offer from him and accepted.

The work you’ve been producing lately is far from the downtempo grooves you pioneered with Mondo Grosso. Which direction are you looking to take your music in the immediate future? Do you plan on revisiting downtempo music in the future?
I don’t particularly intend to set bounds with my music so I want to continue to create in a variety of musical styles as I feel.

I see you’ve been busy DJing a lot recently, mostly in Japan. What’s the club scene like these days in Tokyo? How about in other cities like Kyoto, Kobe, etc.?
I can’t give you the whole picture, but I feel it is the golden era of EDM both in a positive and negative way. I’m against it though. I like banging, but also love dope and cool techno sounds.

What role does DJing play in your creative life? Do you have plans on touring outside Japan?
There is more that a DJ can do than a band in order to embody dance music. From this perspective, DJing is a critical part of my dance music creation. I don’t have any plans for a big tour right now, but I’d like to go anywhere in the world if I find parties that interest me.

I’ve left perhaps the most important question for last: Udon, soba or ramen?!
I like any kind of noodles.

東京のDJ /プロデューサー大沢伸一は、過去の栄光に甘んじることはない。ダウンテンポのハウスプロジェクトであるモンドグロッソで強烈な軌跡を残し、97年にはいまやクラシックとなった「Closer(タイトルトラックにVince Montana and Philly Sound Stringsを起用)」をリリースした後、大沢は、よりダンスフロア向けなサウンドを披露し、彼の2007年のアルバム「The One」で大胆な方向転換を果たした。それ以来、彼は相次いで作品やリミックスを発表してきた 。  彼の新しいリリース「Breaking Through the Night」は、パリのダンスインディーKitsunéとの共作も投入。その前は 「Dope427」で Benny Bennasiとコラボ、また東京の仲間Tei Towaの「 18  」では、日本のディーバAlison Valentineの「Curious」をハウシーにアレンジし、Duck Sauceの「It’s You」はものすごくエナジェティックなリミックスに仕上げた。大沢いわく、 「自分の音楽に特に制約を設けるつもりはないです。自分の感覚にしたがって様々なスタイルの音楽を作成していきたいです。 」

日本では今週消費税が上昇し、みんな買い物に忙しいようですが、 スタジオ用に 何か買いました?

大沢伸一:税の引き上げとはあんまり関係ないけど、最近気になっていたモジュラーシンセサイザーDopeferのDA- 100買いました。

音楽について伺います​​。あなたは、キャリアの中で多くの道をたどってきたけど、あなたは今、本当にダンスフロアのためのトラックに集中しているように思えます。 「Breaking Through the Night」はまさにそんな感じ。いわゆるディスコハウスのサウンドに影響を与えたことは特に 何かはありますか?




あなたのキャリアの中で、「The One」は実にスペシャルなアルバムであり、また、最初にあなたのフルネームを使用した作品ですよね。個人的にはChemical Brothersの「Star Guitar」のカバーが大好きです。あのリミックスアルバムを振り返ってみて、どう思います?ターニングポイントだったでしょうか?

エレクトロ時代の幕開けとリンクしたとは思います。今でも「Star Guitar」が好きだし、Chemical Brothersには、非常に影響を受けました。

最近他のアーティストとのコラボレーションが多いですね。テイ·トウワの「 18 」でフィーチャーされたり、Benny Benassiとの「 Dope427 」があったり。どういった経緯で?


 最近のあなたの仕事は、モンドグロッソで開拓したダウンテンポなグルーブから大分離れたところに向かってますね。近い将来の方向性はいかがでしょう? ダウンテンポに戻ってみるつもりはありますか?





バンドよりDJのほうが、よりダンスミュージックを具現化できます。 そういう観点から、 DJをする事は私のダンスミュージック制作の重要な部分です。今は、大きなツアーの予定はありませんが、自分が面白いと思うパーティーを見つけたら世界のどこにでも行きたいです。



Darren Ressler

Add a Comment