After 25 years, Japanese producer Soichi Terada releases a new album and continues to leave his mark on the legacy of house music. Asakusa Light is out now on Rush Hour.
Soichi Terada is probably the happiest musician I have ever seen live on stage. It was about 5 years ago in Bern at Kapitel Bollwerk. After a flawless set by one of the most original DJs in town, Marc Matsuki, the man of the hour Soichi Terada entered the booth - and smiled. There was some equipment that had to be connected or rewired, maybe they had to remove a turntable to make more space in the booth, I'm not sure anymore.
The club was well filled. People from all over Switzerland wanted to see the Japanese producer who is known for his releases in the late 80s and early 90s, especially those on his Far East Recording label. It took a while for Soichi Terada to get worldwide recognition. I would say that the 2015 compilation Sounds From The Far East, compiled by Hunee and released on Rush Hour, made this possible. (Rumour has it that Zurich's Digger Lexx and Kejeblos introduced Hunee to Terada's early records. Perhaps this can be confirmed at some point.)
The club was getting a little impatient, but finally, the first chord came out of the PA. People started clapping and shouting. The air was full of energy and the first beats started rolling. Terada danced in the booth and sang into the microphone - always smiling.
Now, 5 years after this event, Soichi Terada is releasing his first album in 25 years. It's called Asakusa Light. On Tim Sweeny's Beats In Space podcast, he said the album is made up of "compound memories or meditation he preserved". That makes perfect sense. On Asakusa Light, Terada revives or re-produces what we all love about house music from the early days in the best possible way. I mean, who else but Soichi Terada, who influenced DJs like Larry Levan in New York, could do that?
Back to that night in Bern. What I remember is how happy and grateful Soichi Terada was after his set. We, the audience, were overwhelmed by his performance and cheered for him, with a strong wish that he would play one more track.
Today we are not only happy about another track that comes out of his instruments. Today we are happy that he has given us Asakusa Light.
Words by Dominik André. He writes about DJ culture, music nerd stuff and sometimes shares thoughts about the music business. He runs the record label Subject To Restrictions Discs.