Showing posts with label Marika Takeuchi. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Marika Takeuchi. Show all posts

New Age Instrumental Review: Marika Takeuchi-Colors in the Diary

Release Date: April 1, 2016
Label: Independent

In November of 2014 I covered Marika Takeuchi’s album Rain Stories. Here it is April 2016 and the latest release from this most talented pianist and composer titled Colors in the Diary is now available. Her 4th album is produced by the Grammy-winning producer Will Ackerman and features the world-class cellist Eugene Friesen and violinist Si-Jing Huang. Even though the piano work is good enough to stand alone the addition of these two musicians most certainly accentuate every note produced by the ivory keys.

The colors that populate this lady’s world are what surrounds us all, the beauty of Mother Nature. And through her music Marika paints a most lovely picture and goes from strength to strength to record a solid album. 

With winter disappearing and the spring bringing warmer weather “Frozen Lake” was a quick reminder for folks that experience one of the four seasons. The elegance of Marika’s playing was like watching an ice ballerinas perform on the local lake. It was like a private performance from entertainers, one real and the other imagined thanks to the music brining it all to life.

As “White Mountains” come cascading down through Marika’s talented fingers you use the music as a bridge to the great outdoors. Like an avalanche of emotions, I could imagine looking out my window or driving by to see the beauty and strength of the mountain that sits protecting our beautiful valley. To see something so awesome every day and to watch the changing seasons from afar seems more prolific than seeing it up close, it almost surreal at times yet always appreciated.

The two most important elements of this recording, classical and new age merge to create each piece like it was an individual painting. I think the cover puts that very thought into proper perspective. With tracks like “Remembrance” the cello comes in and creates a longing or sadness if you will. This however is not a negative; it is very meaningful and purposeful. As Marika lets the cello set the tone she introduces a very pragmatic melody and this creates a more upbeat and reflective mood. Remembering a place, person or special day in one’s life comes to mind. This is a very powerful word and so is the music to make it more so.

Marika Takeuchi and her music befit the title of the album Colors in the Diary. The colors are hers but they belong to those that listen to the music at any given moment in time anywhere on earth and certainly easy to relate to for anyone who appreciates and respects the wonders of our natural world. So let this talented lady invite you to paint your own picture and color it with what you will…the colors of life, the outdoors, your emotions, whatever color you are feeling, the music lets you go there. This music is perfect just like the nature that surrounds us and you don’t have to look far to enjoy it.

5/5 Stars

Key Tracks: Frozen Lake, White Mountains, Remembrance


01. Frozen Lake
02. Green Field
03. Blue Falls
04. White Mountains
05. Gray Clouds
06. Remembrance
07. Nostalgia
09. Into The Storm
10. Sparkling Sky
11. Colorful Mind
12. Morning Light
Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-New Age Music Reviews Founder
April 9, 2016
Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Instrumental New Age Review: Marika Takeuchi-Rain Stories

Release Date: November 11, 2014
Label: Indie

A little over a year ago Marika Takeuchi released an impressive album titled Impressions. Now she has returned stronger than ever with Rain Stories.

Her piano playing is outstanding. On the opening track “Rain In The Park,” her music is built around one simple theme (which carries through the recording) and it is mesmerizing. The track brings forth, excuse the expression, a flood of emotions. Its beauty is so overwhelming it nearly brought me to tears. It is filled with a bittersweet sadness however I was really awestruck with the emotion it hit me with. The entire album is pure magic.

Marika’s music is influenced by classical compositions and as recognizable as that is, it still comes out sounding like a gorgeous new age instrumental. Every track one after the other produces different feelings and moods of what rain can bring. It is all transmitted through the talented fingers of this young artisan. I think what she has to offer is a gift from heaven and we are the fortunate recipients to have the opportunity to hear all of these healing sounds.

“Raindrops” actually sounds like rain with the way Marika lets her fingers dance along the ivory keys. Rain can fall hard or slow down to a drizzle and I think she really captures the delicacy and flow of Mother Nature so beautifully within the song. As they saying goes…a little rain can fall in everyone’s life but once the storm clears there are the warm rays of the sun and blue skies waiting to reappear. The entire piece, while audibly pleasing, is and can be very symbolic in anyone’s life.

“Koyo” or colorful leaves are to the Japanese autumn what cherry blossoms are to spring. Marika brings the beauty of Japan right to you with this song. With rain and dropping temperatures we get the foliage that the fall brings. I enjoy it every year and it looks as though God takes a huge paint brush in the sky and paints the landscape. It’s a wonderful thing to experience the changing seasons and even more captivating when envisioned through music.

Marika’s music is tremendously picturesque and moving. As I listen to this type of music more often I realize that it offers so much for each and every listener. It can serve as a time for relaxation, meditation, or used as soundtrack music for films or plays. It has a multitude of gifts to offer and the only requirement is to hit the play button, sit back and absorb all the color, textures and sounds.

Rain Stories tell many tales built upon one simple foundation, what comes out the other side are many musical delights. The seed planted is about what the elements can bring and once that germinates there is so much more to take in and realize inside this beautifully performed music. 

5/5 Stars

Key Tracks: Rain In The Park, Raindrops, Koyo

01.Rain In The Park
02.Misty Night
04.Lost In Darkness
05.Alone In Dreams
10.After The Rain
11.Into The Sky

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck-New Age Music Reviews Founder

November 11, 2014

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews

Track Stream: Marika Takeuchi-Rain In The Park

I was so taken with this beautiful track I had to post it right away. Without a word it sweeps you away and brings so much emotion. It nearly brought me to tears. There is solace and a slice of heaven in this woman's fingers.

Keith "MuzikMan" Hannaleck
More About Marika Takeuchi:

Composer and pianist Marika Takeuchi, a native of Japan, began studies in classical music at the age of three. In addition to the piano, she played violin and french horn for several years. She began studying composition and building career as a composer at the age of 18 at Shobi Music College in Tokyo. Her early career includes composing for Japanese national radio, a major TV series and Universal Music Japan. As well as being strongly influenced and fascinated by classical impressionism and film music, her passions have been also extended into new age music, as she truly believes that music has the profound power to heal and change people’s lives.

New Age Instrumental: Marika Takeuchi-Impressions

Release Date: September 10, 2013
Label: MRG Recordings

When you begin studying classical music at the age of three there is a good chance that by the time you are an adult that you could be making your own adaptations of classical scores or creating your own. In the case of Marika Takeuchi she came via Japan to Boston to study film scoring at the esteemed Berklee College of Music in 2009. Since then she has released two albums, Impressions being her second with a third release coming this fall.

The release clocks in just over 26 minutes however it does make its mark in a prolific manner. Through 10 tracks Marika paints a canvas of beauty and elegance with the ivory keys. Truthfully all the lady needs to do is sit on the piano stool and play. The end result of what she creates is absolutely gorgeous and serene melodies that would relax the most frazzled human.

This is a soundtrack made in heaven; it makes you feel relaxed, spiritual and whole. I agree with the artist, music is healing. It has helped me my entire life, it makes laugh, cry, reminisce, and get in touch with my inner being like nothing else can. Marika has the magic touch with her fingers, almost as if she is channeling an entity that that comes from a higher plane of consciousness. I know for certain her music will allow you to reach that level of existence.

Although it’s a rather short journey the tracks blend into each other, each taking you one step closer to that spiritual plane that allows complete clarity and peace. Music such as this can have many valuable assets and for this listener there were a multitude of things to appreciate. Some albums are boring if one song follows another too closely; with this recording it was more of synchronicity and flow that made everything just perfect. I normally like to choose three key tracks but in this case I felt there was not one track that stood out amongst the rest, it was rather the entire recording as a complete body of work that impressed me. 

Marika Takeuchi is an incredibly gifted and talented musical visionary that has an amazing future ahead if she continues on her path of creativity and enlightenment.

5/5 Stars

Key Tracks: ALL

01.Spring Awakening
02. Horizons       
03. Sparkle
04.Milky Way
06.Morning Mist   
08.Far Away
10. Peace

Keith “MuzikMan” Hannaleck- New Age Music Reviews Founder

July 2, 2014

Review Provided By New Age Music Reviews