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Marissa Cetin
22 November 2022, 16:08

Ryuichi Sakamoto announces new album, ‘12’

This is the revered composer's first new solo studio album outside of his score work since 2017 — out in January 2023 on his 71st birthday

Ryuichi Sakamoto announces new album, ‘12’

Ryuichi Sakamoto is releasing a new album, '12'. His first solo studio album of non-soundtrack material in six years will be released in early 2023. Listen to a teaser below.

The revered composer will release '12' on 17th January, 2023,  his 71st birthday, via Milan Records. It'll feature 12 new tracks that were born from "musical sketches" he created while recovering from a more than two-year battle with cancer. (In early 2021, Sakamoto shared he was diagnosed with cancer for a second time and has been receiving treatment.)

The pieces were recorded in 2021 and 2022, as indicated by the dated track titles, adding to the "sound diary" premise. The only track name that varies is the eighth, '20220302 - sarabande', which is a type of triple-metre dance dating back to the 17th century. 

"After I finally ‘came home’ to my new temporary housing after a big operation, I found myself reaching for the synthesizer," Sakamoto said. "I had no intention of composing something; I just wanted to be showered in sound. I’ll probably continue to keep this kind of ‘diary.’"

On 11th December, Sakamoto will be broadcasting a solo piano concert titled 'Ryuichi Sakamoto: Playing the Piano 2022'. It's made up of live performances recorded over the course of a week at Tokyo's 509 Studio and pieced together into an hour-long special. "I don’t have the energy to do live concerts," he said. "This might be the last time that you will see me perform in this manner." Find more information here.

'12' is Sakamoto's 15th studio album and his first outside of his score work since 2017's 'Async'. Listen to a teaser for '12'.