Spotlight On: Anchorsong
We were recently spoiled by a variety of refreshing and intriguing electronic music at Further Future. One of the acts that caught our ear (and apparently quite a lot of others – the crowds were buzzing!) was Anchorsong. The Tokyo-born, UK-based artist, alias of Masaaki Yoshida, comes to life via truly live hardware sets. One listen and you’ll see why his groovy, world-music vibes peaked the interest of many on the festival’s first night. We had the chance to catch up with him to learn more about his productions, touring, future vision, and more.
RP: Hi! Thanks for taking the time to chat with us. We really enjoyed your set at Further Future and heard a lot of people talking about it all weekend. How was your experience?
Anchorsong: I was relieved to get to play there! My set time was scheduled at 6pm, but I arrived there 15 mins late due to some transportation confusions. Thought I messed up the the program and felt bad, but actually it was very relaxed there. The DJs before me (Idjut Boys) were like “Oh hey you’re here, how long do you need us to play?” I enjoyed playing in front of those easy going audiences.
Did you get to catch any other artists or speakers who inspired you?
I met Stèv there for the first time after exchanging emails for a while. Watching him play lots of hardware on stage was pretty cool.
For our readers unfamiliar with your music, how would you describe it?
It’s organic electronic music designed to be performed live. My setup for the live show is very simple and limited, so the music has to be rather straightforward. I focus on what I’m specialized in by restricting myself that way.
Your sounds are very organic. Do you use samples or your own field recordings?
I sample all kinds of music. Although I believe in sample based music, I’m trying to learn how to create the same vibe with live musicians.
Does your approach to making music in a studio differ from your live sets? How so?
It’s pretty much the same since my composition is based on my live performance as I mentioned above. I spend a lot of time to complete a single track, and my live show is a summary of that process. Audience will literally see how I made those tracks.
You recently performed with a string quartet. Was it difficult to compose all the parts? Is it something you’ll continue doing?
I’ve been playing with string players for a while and always try to bring them on stage whenever I can. I arrange strings parts myself and wouldn’t say I’m great at it, but I know what is needed for my music better than anyone else.
You have lots of roots in Japan and the UK, have played all over, and just finished a little US tour. Do any cities seem to receive your music better than others? Why do you think that is?
London audiences are always great. I think they appreciate the diversity of electronic music better than anywhere else. I had a pretty good time in the US and definitely want to explore more though.
We love your new EP, Expo! Do you have any more releases lined up for the year?
4th single from the album Ceremonial is coming out in the summer. It includes another album track that I remixed myself. Watch this space.
Lastly – One of the items Further Future told everyone to bring was their vision of the future. What’s yours?
Less conflict in the world. It sounds very conventional indeed, but the mood at Further Future certainly got it.
Follow Anchorsong on Soundcloud for more.
Photos by Masa Hamanoi & Vent Photo.