words and art by w a l t e r w s m i t h

30-Day Song Challenge: Day 19 – Asks the question what musician best captures the essence of digital music?

30-Day Song Challenge: Day 19 – Asks the question what musician best captures the essence of digital music?

The Music of Ryoji Ikeda

Ryoji Ikeda - NODE Festival

Ryoji Ikeda – Data. Matrix – Live at Sonair 2010


Ryoji Ikeda – THE TRANSFINITE at Park Avenue Armory, New York City


“I can’t understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I’m frightened of the old ones.” ~ John Cage

I have always had a love for electronic music since the mid 1970’s. This fascination originated with the sounds of analog space music by such artists as Klaus Schulze and Tangerine Dream. Over the years the evolution of electronic music has been quite innovative and exploratory, while simultaneously producing various styles, and sub-genres. I purposely have sought out, over the years, the artists that were on the edge of the new technology–believing in, and embracing the influence–as a source for my own artistic creativity.

The transition to digital technology has opened the door to a multitude of creative possibilities for musicians and visual artists.

Ryoji Ikeda, my featured artist, is an experimental musician who utilizes a multitude of sound sources to create strange but beautiful musical soundscapes.

Ryoji Ikeda (born 1966 in Gifu, Japan) is a Japanese sound artist who lives and works in Paris. Ikeda’s music is concerned primarily with sound in a variety of “raw” states, such as sine tones and noise, often using frequencies at the edges of the range of human hearing. The conclusion of his album +/- features just such a tone; of it, Ikeda says “a high frequency sound is used that the listener becomes aware of only upon its disappearance” (from the CD booklet). Rhythmically, Ikeda’s music is highly imaginative, exploiting beat patterns and, at times, using a variety of discrete tones and noise to create the semblance of a drum machine. His work also encroaches on the world of ambient music; many tracks on his albums are concerned with slowly evolving soundscapes, with little or no sense of pulse.

“If there were one style of music I wish I had the ability to produce it would be the music of Ryoji Ikeda” – Walter Smith

Ryoji Ikeda – Barbican 2011


Ryoji Ikeda – “Per Se”


Ryoji Ikeda - datatron-8k-enhan

7 responses

  1. I don’t listen to electronic music much but i like your selection… should spend some more time exploring this genre… TY! 🙂

    October 17, 2011 at 6:46 am

    • I am always here to introduce you to new music from the genre…stay tuned 🙂

      October 23, 2011 at 9:12 am

  2. “I can’t understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I’m frightened of the old ones.” ~ John Cage Yes, Yes Yes…new ideas, fresh inspiration. The world is changing and with change comes the “creativity” that you possess. We all need it and I am “thinking outside the box” as well as you. I am not into music as much as books but yesterday I wrote the lyrics down to two songs I love. Thanks for stopping by my writing blog, you are my friend.

    October 17, 2011 at 3:25 pm

    • Thanks Jackie your words today are very uplifiting, and I appreciate our friendship as well. We have so much creative energy just waiting to be harnessed in a variety of ways. You possses the beauty of prose and thought in writing. I am a visual interpreter of my experiences. What is important is that we inspire, motivate, and support our creative pursuits as one….

      Do a post on the lyrics you wrote, or just send them to me, and perhaps I can find a visual likeness to your thoughts.


      October 17, 2011 at 5:06 pm

      • I will work on that soon, getting ready to move, bless you my friend ♥

        October 23, 2011 at 9:13 am

        • Good luck with the move Jackie, Where are you moving to? Bless you as well my friend 🙂

          October 23, 2011 at 9:15 am

  3. My sister has a disability, so with all of our family investments she bought a house nearby and we move on the 26th week. I am so excited. I have move 3x in three years this will be my 4th and Hope to be my last move. Today we went to the resale shop and bought stuff for the new house…I will have to post photo’s. ♥
    FYI: OTHER blogs of mine:


    October 23, 2011 at 9:18 am

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