Miho Hatori and Yuka Honda ganged up with Russell Simins of the
Jon Spencer Blues Explosion to record
Butter 08 (Grand Royal, 1996). While a few ideas are intriguing
(Mono Lisa is an early, psychedelic Pink Floyd-ian crescendo,
Dick Serious is a hot, latin-jazz instrumental,
How Do I Relax is classical supermarket muzak), the album is too
confused to stand on its own merits.
Little is whimsical on Stereo Type A (Warner Bros, 1999). Cibo Matto,
that is now augmented with Sean Lennon, is no more a novelty than Julio
Iglesias. Unfortunately, the sound is also not much more adventurous and
the best song,
sounds exactly like one of those elegant Inglesias melodies.
Honda is still a master of the eccentric arrangement, and Hatori is one of
the most original rappers in the world, but this time they run the gamut of
musical genres without enough personality to excel in any:
heavy metal (Blue Train), raga (Working For Vacation),
pop (Flowers), soul (King Of Silence). Except for one song
(the funny rap of Sci-Fi Wasabi), very little of this is ironic.
Mostly, it's what bands do to become pop stars when they have run out of
Yuka Honda's first solo album,
Memories Are My Only Witness (Tzadik, 2002), is a display of
her eclecticism but the collage of styles is sometimes self-indulgent.
It was followed by Eucademix (Tzadik, 2004), a more demented effort.
played bossa nova with Brazilian musician Smokey Hormel on the EP
Tempo De Amor (Afro Sambas, 2002) and debuted solo with
Ecolypsis (2006) in the vein of Kate Bush and Bjork.
Cibo Matto's Yuka Honda released Heart
Chamber Phantoms (Tzadik, 2009) that was a mostly instrumental work
for an ensemble with herself
on software, keyboards, sampler, bass, guitars, tenorion,
percussion, plus drummers Sean Lennon and Dougie
Browne, Michael Leonhart (trumpet, flugelhorn, mellophone, vibraphone,
bass, keyboards, percussion), Shimmy Hirotaka Shimizu (guitar), Erik
Friedlander (cello), Pete Drungle (piano), Jeff Hill (bass) and
vocalists Courtney Kaiser and Scott Seader.
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