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Scope

Nobukazu Takemura Audio CD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)

Price: $20.16 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Formats

Amazon Price New from Used from
MP3 Music, 5 Songs, 1999 $4.49  
Audio CD, 1999 $20.16  
Vinyl, 2009 $18.52  

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Scope + Assembler: Assembler 2
Price for both: $39.18

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 22, 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Thrill Jockey
  • ASIN: B00000JCD2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #384,065 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. On A Balloon
2. Kepler
3. Taw
4. Icefall
5. Tiddler

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

Nobukazu Takemura's impressive contribution to the otherwise unimpressive Reich Remixed marked him as a talent to watch. But on Scope, his U.S. debut under his own name (he released a record under the Child's View moniker in May 1999), Takemura is revealed as an artist with a singular rhythmic and textural imagination whose music recognizes no boundaries. The opening track, "On a Balloon," is rhythmic in the cinematic sense; a flickering pattern of digital blips strategically reappears throughout its 22-minute duration to link disparate sections of manipulated vinyl surface noise, throbbing keyboard tones, and the sounds of skipping CDs. On the next track, "Kepler," Takemura revisits Reich country by stringing sampled metalophones, harps, and female voices in dense, hypnotic repeated patterns around sustained synthetic hums. On "Taw" he swings doppler-shifting sequences of clicks and carousel organ tones in a vertiginous, elliptical orbit. He even tips his hat to old-old-school electronics on "Tiddler," a closing prayer that would have fit in fine on Cluster's Sowiesoso. --Bill Meyer

Product Description


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The new psychedelia August 27, 1999
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
Nobukazu Takemura takes the listener on a fascinating, hypnotic journey through a strange off-world composed of micro events and digital errors. I read an interview where Takemura spoke of the randomizer program he used to assemble "Scope". I was reminded of George Martin's instructions to Geoff Emerick during the Beatles "Sgt Pepper" sessions, to take a recording of fairground calliopes, cut the tape into varying lengths, toss into the air and then reassemble at random the scattered pieces. The result: the maddening swirl at the climax of "Being for the Benefit of Mr. Kite". In my opinion, psychedelia isn't some folksinger strumming a guitar and singing nonsense about gnomes to the accompanying drone of a battered farfisa or wheezing mellotron. The new psychedelia can be found in the work of bands like Oval ("dok"), Microstoria ("snd"), Main ("firmament"), Otasco ("new maps of time") and Stars of the Lid ("per aspera ad astra").
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best use of stereo ever. Yes, I do mean ever. December 26, 1999
By N Davis
Format:Audio CD
Japanese dj/producer has created his finest and most mature release to date with Scope. I was disabled by the numbing beauty and wonder that I experienced by listening to this record. six and a half minutes into the first track, takemura has placed an incredible section of stereophonic noise. it seriously changed my entire view of music in general, especially that which is made by electronic means.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Makes me feel dizzy and seasick May 10, 2000
Format:Audio CD
The music on this album is certainly very innovative and original, but that isn't always enough. I like his softer more melodic side like in 'tiddler' and 'kepler'. 'Icefall'is a very innovative song...I've never heard anything like it in my life...I love the style and the incredible wall of sound and CD skipping...it sounds like your CD player has taken some electronic LSD and started to make his own music out of your Aphex Twin CD's. It makes me feel very dizzy though and it's the only music I know of that can actually make me seasick.
Very strange and recommended only for pure electro-geeks.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, Engaging Art December 13, 1999
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
The disjointed animated sounds on this CD remind me more of a first rate modern art exhibit than a 40 minute CD. However, since I rate 1st rate modern art exhibits much higher than CD's that's a very good thing. All the tracks are different and display that uniquely Japanese trait of finding beauty through simplicity, space and seeming disharmony. This is wonderful. The world may be looking back 100 years from now and pointing to this as one of the finest examples of fine arts of any kind.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Machine music with heart December 26, 2004
Format:Audio CD
Nobukazu Takemura is clearly a prodigious talent, if this CD is an true indication of his abilities. I find this kind of 'deconstructionist' music fascinating anyway, but this is a rivetting example of this genre.

- 'on a balloon' - opening synth 'theme' is like an electronic lighthouse signal, warning us to avoid being wrecked on the rocks of the stark and bleepy minimalism to follow. While it didn't grab other reviewers, it certainly has me drooling for more
- 'kepler' - more approachable, with its insistent rhythms and synth throbs and bleeps, this is a fabulous foil to the first track. The track has an almost Steve Reich-like drive to it in parts. Captivating!
- 'taw' - here we are back to the less safe ground of synth bleeps and squelches. this track has a cheeky ambience that is very engaging - machine music with food for the head and heart
- 'icefall' - radiant and almost catchy, this is a welcome return to the warmer 'kepler' style, while it manages to also maintain an almost industrial starkness. A glitch track that stands tall with the best of that genre
- 'tiddler' - carnival-like tune cleverly deconstructed to finally become a stark synth-chord ending

Avoid this album if you want tunes that stick in your head, or background music. Buy it if you love innovative and emotionally centred electronica that tickles the cerebral cortex and releases floods of endorphins, bringing a wry smile to your face and a warm and blissful buzz to your body and soul.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unlike anything you've likely heard before December 11, 2008
Format:Audio CD
This 1999 album marked Japanese DJ savant Nobukazu Takemura's debut into highly experimental, difficult to classify music, which had previously been primarily club oriented or at least closer to the traditional side of IDM. "On A Balloon" kicks things off ambitiously with more than 20 minutes of utterly alien, amorphous sounds, whose original sources we can only guess at. His process for generating these sonic wonders involves sending some of the outputs of his mixing board back into the inputs, creating a feedback loop with many exotic possibilities. The palette of sounds constantly changes, but many melodic and textural themes do recur - Takemura's use of building up and breaking down patterns keeps the careful listener in constant attention and surprise. His use of stereo panning is also very impressive here; headphones are recommended to appreciate all the detail present.

Next is "Kepler", the most accessible song on the album and arguably the highlight. It finds Takemura in a minimalistic setting very reminiscent of Steve Reich, with beautiful warm synthesized melodic figures repeating in a meter that one would rather just cruise with than hope to count. Soon micro-aural vocal samples enter, unpredictably fracturing and interacting until they form steady rhythms. All the while the underlying harmony undergoes sudden modulations, drastically changing the mood from serene to ominous and back. This song is a gem among the best electronic creations this author has heard.

The remaining material maintains a high standard, though much of it is a good deal less accessible. On "Taw", many jarring, dissonant, awkward, and confusing sounds are juxtaposed in complicated ways that many listeners may not find musical in any traditional sense. This is not music to tap one's foot to.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting and beautiful, but slightly uneven
"Scope" is my first Nobukazu Takemura album, so I'll restrict my comments only to what I'm hearing on this CD and leave the comparisons to other reviewers. Read more
Published on July 23, 2008 by Steward Willons
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing!
A gust of wind. Soaring. Rising. Floating. High above the Earth, I look down and take in the gorgeous scenery. Read more
Published on May 21, 2006 by Dahgrow
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth it for icefall alone!!
I only own the track 'Icefall'off the Scope album & feel that any music fan should hear it just because it's so unashamedly different & I should imagine would change... Read more
Published on April 16, 2004 by Ryan Scott Frances
4.0 out of 5 stars incrível
this is an very abstract , patchwork stuff,sometimes looks like a Jim O'Rourks partnership with Autechre having a baby ;micro sounds sparking around like snowflakes having their... Read more
Published on June 23, 2003 by eduardo santalena
4.0 out of 5 stars The Beautiful Noise
Do not buy this CD if you don't have an open mind. You'll listen to it once and think... "Huh?", then probably never listen to it again. That would be a shame. Read more
Published on November 2, 2000 by "thewritingbuddha"
1.0 out of 5 stars Maybe somewhere along the line I'm missing the point!
I looked high and low to get hold of some of this music - on the strength of reviews and remixes and was looking forward to a veritable auditory feast - and was abject when I... Read more
Published on September 18, 2000
4.0 out of 5 stars The most melodic of glitches
Nobukazu Takemura made a name for himself with his Child's View recordings in the early to mid period of the 90s. Read more
Published on July 6, 2000 by Matthew D. Mercer
4.0 out of 5 stars A fine contribution to early 21st century psychedelica
To its merit, "Scope" does a great job of mimicking the patterns and structure of geometric sculptures, along with articulating a playful, childlike romance of our... Read more
Published on April 26, 2000
4.0 out of 5 stars Noise "soft rock" style
At first I hated parts of this disc and loved others. Eventually I began to feel less that it was uneven and more that it was just unpredictable. Read more
Published on April 11, 2000
5.0 out of 5 stars Accessible esoterica
Takemura seems to invent a new musical language in this music. It's rare that someone can move so far away from familiar musical forms and still create something that can be... Read more
Published on April 3, 2000 by Michael Richards
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