Esperanto album cover

Ryuichi Sakamoto


By 1985, choreographer Molissa Fenley had emerged as one of the strongest voices in modern dance, even crossing over to collaborate with the likes of Philip Glass, Keith Haring, Talking Heads, and Rei Kawakubo. She topped herself with a physically demanding, evening-length piece entitled Esperanto, which featured an all-female troupe, Jean-Paul Gaultier costumes, and a soundtrack created by Ryuichi Sakamoto. It was the first glimpse of him using his sampler as a compositional tool and the results were visceral and mesmerizing, jagged and beautiful like a Parc Güell mosaic. With spiky no wave guitar from Arto Lindsey and tribal percussion from Yas-Kaz, it makes for one of the more abstract yet rewarding albums in Sakamoto’s catalog.

Andy Beta

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