Friday, 18 September 2015


Here is a lovely slice of music courtesy of Eriko Toyoda, a Japanese artist whom I stumbled upon a couple of years ago. Her previous work has been marked by glitch-laden production, which makes this relatively stripped-back song, 'Seductive Eyes / Because You Wanted It', a surprise refreshment for the ears.

It is characterised for the most part by a guitar chord progression played on loop, muted tones in a bossa nova rhythm, soothing and soft, though tinged with a certain empty sadness, like looking back on heartbreak or unrequited love from a perspective of lonesome calm.

One of the song's tags, alongside "loop station", is "broken microphone" – and if this refers to the actual microphone being broken, well, it's a great effect; Toyoda's voice ends up with this thin, metallic quality which, whilst giving it a stylised delicacy, also gives it the sense of being recorded in a very DIY fashion, adding endless romance to the song. She lays down arresting harmonies as she sings the song's refraining lyrics – "I try to forget those seductive eyes" – which by the end of the track becomes a cloud cushion of ear-satisfying richness, occasionally different lines weaving through one another in an impressive show of polyphony.

Add to this ornamentations in the guitar parts, gently sweeping, lightly plucked arpeggios, giving it a dreamy and expansive feel, as well as softened lines of sparse just-discernible guitar melody, and decorations in her vocals – with a brief moment of subtle delay added later in the song, as well as it ending with an ebb and flow of wordless duetting as the guitar pauses playing random ambient notes – and the song is complete: a languorous poem painting a far-off memory of romance, told with a simple and evocative looping guitar accompaniment.

Eriko Toyoda Social Media Presence ☟

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