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Various Artists
ALFA / YEN Records 1980—1987

Great Tracks | Alfa

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$85.00 SGD
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$85.00 SGD


Spurred by the advent of new recording technology such as 24-channel SSL consoles, members of Japan’s leading synth-pop group of the ‘70s, Yellow Magic Orchestra (Ryuichi Sakamoto, Haruomi Hosono, Yukuhiro Takahashi), minted the Yen division of Alfa Records in 1982 in order to issue their own work, and others, that documented the nascent bloom of Tokyo’s city pop or techno pop sound. 

Long elusive outside of Japan, these tracks document a scene comparable to the melodic ‘60s Mersey Beat sound of Liverpool, and paralleling a movement of synth-pop/electro-pop in ‘80s UK that  itself betrayed return influence from YMO’s earlier work, as much as Kraftwerk. Thus, this set is a hugely enjoyable and timely survey of a pivotal era in pop music whose influence would feed forward right into the current fascinations with vintage Japanese electronic music and new ears raking YouTube and 2nd hand sites for seeds of the future. 

This is a true celebration of Japan's Techno Pop scene of the 80s, reissued with the intent that future generations, internationally, will be able to discover, enjoy, and appreciate ALFA/YEN and its significant contributions to the sonic landscape of the 80s and beyond. ALFA/YEN: The label was established by Haruomi Hosono and Yukihiro Takahashi in May 1982, within Alfa Records. For Haruomi Hosono, it was a long-awaited label driven by producers and artists, and for Yukihiro Takahashi, he enjoyed experimenting with his works at a private studio. The label continued to release high-quality works not just by YMO and related artists but also unique artists such as Hajime Tachibana and Jun Togawa, and cutting-edge bands such as Testpattern and Interior. Unfortunately, the label ended in May 1985, but its success led to a later boom in indie labels, and it continues to have a profound impact on Japanese music. — (via

Label: Great Tracks
Format: 2x Vinyl, LP, Compilation
Country: Japan
Released: Apr 2024
Genre: Electronic, Pop
Style: Synth-pop, City Pop, Leftfield, Hip Hop, New Wave, Minimal

File under: Japanese Electronic