PREMIERE: Dear by Daigo Hanada

This March will see the release of the long anticipated second full-length record by Japanese composer & pianist Daigo Hanada. The gap since his debut album Ichiru (2017) has encompassed an EP along with scattered singles and collaborations but also unfortunately the onset of a sudden and debilitating physical illness which has resulted in numerous trips to the hospital and having to endure prolonged periods of uncertainty. But, Hanada has managed to find hope through these setbacks and challenges (or as he puts it “hope has found me”), and so he has dedicated the music he made for the forthcoming Satori to ‘people who are going through pain and suffering’. The first preview of that music is available here now in this exclusive premiere of a new single entitled “Dear”.

The words I used when I had the chance to preview a song & video from Hanada’s lovely EP Ouka in the summer of 2019 seem even more now. There is an elegant simplicity to his work, a balance between melody, harmony, and space that is easy to listen to but takes a special touch to achieve and that can be heard in the delicate flow of this poignantly tender piece that will capture your heart in the space of less than two minutes.

As a pianist without any formal training, I’ve always had a hard time giving myself freedom on the piano, but on this one I felt like I was ready to do it all freely, and so it’s actually an improvised piece. Living in this highly systemized world and with so many struggling to find their true selves (including me), we will keep trying to find a way to free ourselves (expressed in the right hand on the piano). On the other hand, I found it kind of ironic that even if we do free ourselves, we will still be part of the system and never completely free from it (left hand on the piano).

Daigo Hanada

Satori will be available from Moderna Records in digital, CD and vinyl format on March 4th 2022. The album was mastered by Martin Heyne at Lichte Studio (Berlin) and is paired with artwork by generative artist & software engineer Andrea Diotallevi from his ‘Moonlight Series’.

Links: Moderna Records (Bandcamp) | Daigo Hanada