Toyohiko Satoh: Songs and instrumental music inspired by western and eastern mysticism
The Japanese word YUGEN is usually defined as “an awareness of the universe that triggers emotional responses too deep and mysterious for words.”
Toyohiko Satoh chose this title for his new recording of his own compositions, which he created mostly in the last years, living in Japan and being involved in traditional Japanese arts and tea ceremony.
As a perfoming musican and composer, he spent most of his life in Europe. Now, towards the end of his career, he shows his own understanding of cross-cultural connection between east and west as well as between classical and traditional music.
YUGEN contains songs and instrumental pieces that are hard to classify, but all the more beautiful and inspiring to listen to.
"When listening to these dreams of Satoh, do we hear fragile and delicate music, is there an unfathomable atmosphere and a graceful elegance of style in the performance, do we hear a world of many possibilities and can we perceive some of the joy in being creative within given limitations? I think so. The instruments are played delicately, the music is elegant and especially in the slower Japanese works we feel an unfathomable atmosphere. The wide variety of pieces does showcase Satoh’s skill in creating different worlds with a limited ensemble. Another aspect we hear in the recording is joy. The joy of three friends making music together and the joyful sounds of folk songs and nursery rhymes. Listening to this CD I feel Satoh invites me to join him and his friends in his dream world. It is a pleasant place to be."
D. van Ooijen, Nostalgia Magazine 47, Jan. 2017