Name: Yuko Araki
Current Release: End of Trilogy on Room 40
If you enjoyed these thoughts by Yuko Araki, more information can be found on her website yuko-araki.tumblr.com/ and Facebook pages.
The smell of my first studio was terrible and I remember that I really struggled to learn how to use equipment like a big mixer etc. and could hardly do anything. I ended up buying drumsticks and playing a drum kit just because it's an unplugged instrument and less intimidating.
At the beginning of my solo project, I played some analogue synth which I used for my previous project - an acid house duo - and I wrongly used the xoxbox, maximum tempo plus analogue delay making high bpm bass sounds trying to make noise. I love the JOMOX T-resonator, I feel like I am playing a guitar solo when I use it. Also I like leploo, an Italian handmade synth/drum machine.
I always explore better quality sounds and an ever more compact set for carrying around on tour. But I’m always curious about new gear, it’s kind of addictive. Recently I got to buy a PCDJ controller. I was not so interested in DJing plus I was a bit worried that I would get into it too much because I had plenty of projects which I couldn’t find enough time for already. But since Covid, no touring + no gigs, I had more time on my hands. Then last year I got invited to submit a mixtape for a collective called HER based in Melbourne and it was such a fun experience to make a mixtape, so then I really got into it. It’s nice when people ask me to do new musical things like when I started to play drums with my other band called KUUNATIC when they were looking for a drummer. I started to play analogue synth when I got invited to my friend’s project. So, I think that’s one of the reasons to keep exploring new gear is that I am blessed with friends who open new horizons for me.
Keeping a primitive mind yields good results. There are tons of technologies that would help my work but it’s not the main thing - emotion and passion are much more important for me. But of course, if I discover an interesting technology that inspires my passion the two things symbiotically help each other I think.
Information and Communication Technology has seen a significant shift, we can discover vast reservoirs of information on the internet and this gives us more knowledge equality. DAW has had a big impact on my music even though I don’t use it very well. We can even virtually experiment recording at Abbey Road Studio through a plug-in, so that also brings equality to musical opportunities regardless of budget compared to the near impossibility of doing the same thing in reality.
If someone doesn't enjoy playing instruments they can make music through sampling and other technologies which might produce another kind of equality too. The sounds and feeling between the two things would be different of course but it mainly depends on how people personally enjoy being creative. I shouldn’t compare them though ...it might be like a dystopia or utopia - there might well be a coming era where we will not care about gender/looks and even age if people have a cyber brain in the future.
I’ve not experienced AI yet, but I'm very curious to see if I could make music with another me. That would be fascinating. I would like to see the development of an AI that could record and store my current sense of myself then put it in a different environment for a while. Then I would be able to live a parallel life and achieve expanded ideas while still preserving my initial sensibility and identity ... this sounds a bit greedy doesn’t it?
I stay at home alone a lot these days, and I tried to have a conversation with Siri but alas, he/she/they never became my friend.