Redefining the Concept
It is a simple to destroy ideas, matter, and orthodox ways and term it “punk” or “avant-garde”. However, rendering meaning to the process of destruction is achieved most effectively from a theoretical basis.
“contrapuntal” is a musical term referring to the art of combining two or more independent melodies. J.S. Bach mastered contrapuntal composition in music, though Skepper redefines the term pointing to a different type of composition: harnessing sound as his independent melody, Skepper collaborates with creators across different disciplines who represent their distinct “melody” - graphic design, fashion, photography, contemporary dance and choreography, performance art, visual art, video art, film … experimentation and innovation the key to collaboration.
Established in Tokyo 2009, contrapuntal records is a boutique and independent record
label exclusively releasing Skepper’s solo albums, on both 12 inch vinyl and audio CD.
For licensing inquiries and composition commissions for Skepper’s original works,
including commissions for Film, TV commercials, corporate campaigns and Public Art
Institutions contact here
contrapuntal records 001
Released by contrapuntal records, "eika 詠歌" is Skepper’s debut solo album composed and recorded in Tokyo. The album is a culmination of Skepper’s exploration of “looping” and “sampling” techniques drawn from his experience with techno and hip-hop production and performance.
Conceived for violoncello, the layering of violoncello melodies or samples, are multi-tracked to create a full orchestral sound.
Originally released on 12” vinyl record, the music inspired a cross-collaboration between graphic art director Ito Keiji, couturier Michiko Suzuki, milliner Rachel Skepper, photographer David Stetson and cameraman Hisanori Furukawa (Akira Kurosawa). This resulted in an Exhibition “requiem d’une marionette”, presented at The House of Tomorrow by architect Frank Lloyd Wright in Tokyo. The album was also released at this exhibition.
The artwork collaboration with graphic art director Ito Keiji of Unidentified Flying Graphics (UFG) also represents an ongoing collaboration between the artists.
contrapuntal records 002
“Parnassus” is a collection of musical poetry, composed and recorded at the old military offices of the French Embassy in Tokyo at “No Mans Land” artist residency and exhibition held during the Japanese winter of 2009-2010.
In his second solo album, Skepper continues to explore looping, sound sampling and field recording, in the very specific context of an artist in residency. The compositions were inspired by the architecture of the Tokyo French Embassy, the change in seasons from autumn to winter, interactions with fellow artists and patrons, and Creation and Destruction, the concept of the exhibition.
This album features harpsichord, toy piano, music boxes and even the sewing machine resulting in a contemporary and cinematic album, a modern experiment in sound production, recording and composition.
“Looping technology has allowed me to explore the possibility and push the boundaries of what is physically possible as an instrumentalist. The loop machine allows me to move beyond human capability, beyond conventional rules. At the same time, referencing the idea of REPETITION strikes to the very core of nature and existence.” Benjamin Skepper 2010
contrapuntal records 003
In his third solo album, Skepper returns to a more traditional approach to music production with “Inimitable”. Recording the album with master engineer Casey Miyamoto in Japan before the 2011 Tohoku disaster, ensuing events halted the production. Co-sound engineers Naomune Anzai and Kohji Fujita collaborated between Tokyo and Melbourne with final mastering completed in Australia early 2012. A truly international collaboration, Skepper was able to produce the album affirm his commitment to “made in Japan” and his talented Japanese sound team.
contrapuntal is proud to announce the release of “Inimitable” - an artist and a sound defying imitation.