TAKÉNOBU | Introduction

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United States - Georgia

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Folk: Appalachian Folk Classical: Impressionism Moods: Type: Acoustic
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Instrumental cello tracks juxtaposed with folk and blues influenced compositions with mellow singing. Cinematic tracks with string melodies that are at times upbeat and others wistful and contemplative.
Genre: Folk: Appalachian Folk
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Deeper Than the Vine
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5:28 $0.99
2. To the Stars
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3:32 $0.99
3. Time for Some
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5:18 $0.99
4. Shady Grove
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4:05 $0.99
5. Beggars Can't be Choosers
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3:33 $0.99
6. Accomplice
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3:02 $0.99
7. Neverland
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4:54 $0.99
8. Fishin'
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2:09 $0.99
9. Pretty Fix
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5:30 $0.99
10. Thursday
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3:36 $0.99
11. Low Integrity
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5:28 $0.99
12. Watersong
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6:37 $0.99
Available as MP3, MP3 320, and FLAC files.


Album Notes
The cello is the most similar in sound to the human voice, and when combined in layers it makes a chorus of strings. Add to that Takenobu's mellow and warm vocals and you get a unique and refreshing sound that will yield many rewarding listens. Takenobu's Introduction draws from a range of folk, blues, classical, rock, and pop influences to create a sonic landscape that is mellow and soothing, yet still fresh and modern. The upbeat instrumental track "Thursday" is a melodic meditation, with playful harmonies and fanciful sounding pizzicato. The layered strings make a rich texture of melody and rhythm that is orchestral and classical in its roots, but modern in its execution.

The emotional range of the cello, like the human voice is quite vast, and throughout Introdution, Takenobu explores a wide array of emotional styles and moods. The instrumental track "Fishin'" is wistful and contemplative, but still dark and rich. The soulful melody lines have a distinctly asian texture, evoking the sounds of some ancient tune, played over the plucking of a dark and haunting instrument.

The folk classic "Shady Grove" gets a new and unique interpretation, as Takenobu's original arrangement for the cello brings the appalachian classic into a new ethereal space. The rolling bowed chords bring new warmth and depth to the bluegrass classic. The longing of the melody is both remorseful and loving, and the cello brings a certain heaviness to the tune, that only adds to its emotional depth.

Takenobu's debut album is an exploration of the boundaries of what can be composed for the cello. "Time for Some Action", "Accomplice", and "To the Stars" are lyrical songs written in the contemporary pop style, just arranged for layers of cello, instead of guitar. "Deeper than the Vine" and "Beggars Can't be Choosers" display how versatile the cello can be, and that it really can play the blues. Slapped rhythms and hard plucking make these blues songs foot-stompers in their own right.

Experimentation and more avant garde harmonic and rhythmic constructions are the basis of "Neverland." The track is the boldest production effort and incorporates rhythmic grooves and abrupt changes to create a very distinctive and more rhythmically complex piece. The layered vocal harmonies accentuate the explorative nature of the piece.

Today there are several prominent musicians and composers that are bridging the gap between classical instruments and modern music. The violinist and guitarist Andrew Bird, cellist Zoe Keating, multi-instrumentalist Sufjan Stevens, all share a similar musical space with Takenobu. However the classical instrumentation isn't a limitation, many modern day artists evoke a similar emotional depth and nostalgic sound; artists like Fleet Foxes, Bon Iver, Avett Brothers, and Iron & Wine. There's something haunting that these artists share in common, and Takenobu's Introduction dabbles in the same space.


to write a review

jerome williams

Like it a lot. Have recommended it to friends.


Original, true and potential for the future
I haven't perked up my ears and ordered a CD in a long time. The haunting, new, technically interesting cello magic caught me. The cello work sounds original. You could feel it swinging out (? wrenched) from deep classical roots into the light of these days.

eugene ely

Associate Principal
a very pleasurable experience. interesting to compare with the live performance, some songs are better in person and some are better recorded. nick's voice is definitely helped by the recording studio. hope they make it, i definitely would like to hear more music like this!!

River Chen

I love it!

Guy Mitchell

Very enjoyable! Musical, Different, Interesting...
Having an extremely diverse career in the music business I can honestly say that I have heard lots of bad and some very good music. Takenobu, consisting of a cello player and a drummer/percussionist unite to create extremely musical original works that are certainly different from the standard fare that proliferates in New York City lately. Nick Ogawa's voice in combination with his classically trained cello which he sometimes doubles, triples and even quadruples creates a warm wash of melody and beat that soothes the listener's ears, even after repeated listenings. In fact, the facets become clearer as the listener becomes more familiar with the recordings. Geoff Lewit's drums are exquisite in their refrain, never overpowering the medody but rather, imparting another dimension to it. One wonders what the maximum potential of Takenobu will be. In the proper hands, the sky is the limit. (That very well could be the title to the next CD!)


Great voice and original music.
Very refreshing. Love the balance between the voice and cello. Great percussion theme running through the music. Nice raw sound.

Craig Chesler

To my ears, "Introduction" is hands down the most original, musically satisfying CD since Björk released "Debut" in 1993.

Enough said.

Jack Newman

Heard Shady Grove on the Radio!
I was on a long car trip listening to the radio and this incredible version of Shady Grove came on like I\'d never heard before. Thankfully the DJ said that it was Nick Ogawa, and when I got home I looked him up on the internet. I bought the cd and could not be more pleased with my purchase. It\'s incredible!! 5 stars!!!


new and different
I heard this on Pandora and loved it. I liked the different sound of the music. Bought it!


Heard it on pandora!
I was channel surfing on pandora and i heard thursday. It was amazing!! I had to buy it immediately. This music is awesome!