Yellow Magic Orchestra

Yellow Magic Orchestra Biography

Japanese electropop band, formed in 1978.

The principal members were Haruomi Hosono (bass), Yukihiro Takahashi (drums) and Ryuichi Sakamoto (keyboards).

The band was originally conceived as a one-off studio project by Hosono, the other two members being recruited session musicians - the idea was to produce an album fusing orientalist exotica (cf their cover version of Martin Denny's Firecracker) with modern electronics. However the first album (with its cutting-edge production) was very popular, and the studio project grew into a fully fledged touring band and career for its three members.

Making abundant use of new synthesizers, samplers, digital and computer recording technology as it became available, their popularity and influence extended beyond Japan. Generally the band are highly regarded as pioneers of electronic music, and continue to be remixed and sampled by modern artists.

The band had stopped working together by 1984, the three members returning to their solo careers. They released a one-off reunion album, Technodon, in 1993.

The early 2000s saw Hosono & Takahashi reunited in a project called Sketch Show. On a number of occasions Ryuichi Sakamoto has joined in on Sketch Show performances and recording sessions. He later proposed they rename the unit "Human Audio Sponge" when he participates.

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