Wednesday 25 September 2013



Perhaps you know or perhaps you don't, but I wrote about Japanese singer and trackmaker Cuushe's new album, Butterfly Case, on Monday - the day of its international release. Far from replicating that highly positive review that I wrote (all things are positive; cast your negativity aside), I will say simply that it is the kind of album that grips you at first, cradles you, and then lays you gently down for sleep - by the end of it, when it finishes, it feels as though you've just awakened from a trance. That's the kind of music that Cuushe makes: dreamy, otherworldly, beautiful.

Cuushe herself, once based in Berlin but now back in Japan, was very kind enough to answer some questions for me, for YES/NO, for the good of the age old tradition of finding out more about something you like. She comes across very well, but for somebody who makes such... well, "human" music - deep with feeling - you would expect her to be a very nice person and she is indeed very nice.

Here is what she had to say...

Who are you? Where are you from? What do you do?
 Hi I am Cuushe. I am from Kyoto and I make music.

Why did you decide to start creating music?
 Naturally I started to create music from when I was little girl using piano, because my mum made me to go to piano lessons, and I didn't like to practice, but I liked to play piano improvisationally. That was the start of me creating music.

How would you describe your sound? What makes you and your style stand out?
 My sound is "Dream Pop", I call it. It's like dancing in dreams. Sometimes it's under the water, sometimes it's on another planet.

Is there a perfect time and place for listening to your music?
 I almost always make music in the night, so night is a good time for my music, and maybe sunrise and sunset time!

What inspires you most when writing a song?
 My emotions. When I am sad, I make a sad song, but sometimes I would make a happy song to make me happy.
 And when I want to dance or I am high, I make an up-tempo song. And of course movies and my friends' music inspire me lots!

What is your most memorable musical experience?
 Touring in Europe this year from March to April was soo great! I met many nice people! Love them and love the experience! Sometimes I was on radio programs... my english was terrible... but it was fun!

What are your favourite three songs at the moment?
 I've recently listened to this song again and again... my heart feels pain and beauty... so great!
 Daughter - "Still"
 And I like to listen to this album in the night. So chill... love his voice.
 Sam Amidon - "Bright Sunny South"

Who do you most admire in the music world?
 Boards of Canada.
 Love their sounds always.

In your opinion, what is the future of music?
 People love music in any situation, so music will keep alive and music lovers will protect music, I think. Me as well.

What's the future of your music - what do you hope to do next?
 Next, I want to do collaboration work with someone, but I don't know who yet...
 I want to make some up-beat songs now.

What, aside from music, is most important to you?

The romanticism of creating what is essentially art, if we can assume that music is art, as a reaction to or a cure for our emotions is not dead, it seems. For Cuushe - real name Mayuko Hitotsuyanagi - her dreamy style tells of nights beset with different emotions, like the contemporary musical version of a poet writing in ink by candlelight. Her music is fragile and delicate, thin and hushed, so as not to disturb you too much - it's not the kind of music you party to, let's say that much.

However, the prospect of a collaboration by Cuushe with somebody (who will it be? It's a secret to everybody, including Cuushe herself) in order to create some "up-beat" songs is a rather a happy prospect. Whether it will be similar to her current style of music, one injected with the dreams and hush of night, or if it will change completely is something that we'll have to wait to see. I would definitely be up for hearing a different side to Cuushe, though, maybe one that leans towards the "pop" side of dream pop - something different is always nice, isn't it?


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Like Cuushe on Facebook
Listen to Cuushe on Soundcloud
Visit Cuushe's official site

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