MIEKO SHIMIZU releases Mike Lindsay remix of 'Butterfly'
The upcoming release of Butterfly remixed by Mike Lindsay from Tunng was originally released on Mieko’s I Bloom album now set to be released as a compelling new remix.
Mieko’s work has been described as; “telling stories that feel poetic and ancient.” - Aesthetica Magazine 2020
This is one of Mieko’s most beautiful tracks in both musical arrangements and poetic lyrical verses. Mieko wrote Butterfly just after her mother’s passing, although the lyrics are not directly descriptive about her mother. They are more utopian about the image of a life leaving a body and transforming into some form of energy. Combining the ideology of the story when people die, they turn into a butterfly which comes and says goodbye before they leave this world. Such as the closing lyrics: “Butterfly on a spiders web searching for the light, the light shining back”
The track takes on experimental synth pop beats traveling through an electronic soundscape with Mieko’s signature mix of avant-garde and electronica. Mieko’s elegant floating and wandering melodic vocals are accompanied with shining synth melodies over the top of punchy and gritty basslines and textured harmonic phrases from accordion chords.
Mieko Shimizu is releasing her new track, Butterfly remixed by Mike Lindsay, both digitally across streaming platforms and physically as a single on 12th May 2020.
With a career that has seen her as an acclaimed Japanese electronic artist and producer, a trailblazing female drum’n’bass DJ (signed to Haruomi Hosono’s personal label), a collaborator with the likes of MC RIZ (Riz Ahmed) and Mick Karn (JAPAN), and having her own residency at the Southbank, it’s safe to say that Mieko Shimizu is sui generis. Mieko’s album I Bloom is a neoclassical journey through a landscape of Japanese folk and electronica and this genuinely ground breaking Japanese artist has been described as cross between Björk & Laurie Anderson.
On ‘I Bloom’, Mieko’s influences weren’t really other musicians or artists. “What influenced me most,” she says, “were people’s stories, especially the small ones that didn’t even have a conclusion. They mysteriously attracted me, like a magnetic force. I was subconsciously collecting them in my head.”
The album strikes a balance between acoustic, pastoral sounds and electronica – a deliberate decision from Mieko.“I wanted create Analogue Acoustic Electronica with warm tones, from a shabby old piano someone had given me and a couple of synths, a modern Sub 37 Moog and an ancient ARP Axxe. I categorically resisted putting in any beats. It was an intentional effort but not as easy as I had imagined because I was always tempted to go with my usual electronic tendencies.”
In 1993 Mieko arrived in London with her brother (and fellow critically acclaimed musician) Yasuaki Shimizu with a singular goal in mind – to subvert all expectations of her as an artist. A statement of intent, she put out her first record on Chris Cutler (of cult avant-rock group Henry Cow)’s label. In 1998, Mieko broke into the drum’n’bass scene under the moniker of Apache 61, quickly building a name for herself in an underground scene dominated by male contemporaries. DJ Magazine, reviewing one of her shows, said that she was “deconstructing the form so much that the beginning of her set slipped into pure searing, tearing audio art territory.” This press attention saw Mieko sign to Haruomi Hosono’s (Yellow Magic Orchestra) label and led to Mieko remixing a number of YMO tracks in her career.
The turn of the century saw Mieko balance her Apache 61 work with her own brand of electronica, seeing her support the likes of Goldfrapp and in 2008, Massive Attack and Riz MC at Meltdown Festival. She has also worked extensively with dance including scores for contemporary dance company Phoenix Dance Theatre, the Ballet ‘The Red Balloon’ at the Royal Opera House’s Linbury Theatre and performing at the London Olympics in 2012.
In every aspect of her career, Mieko has refused to be restrained or placed in a box artistically, and new record I Bloom sees a continuation of that ethos.
Currently during Covid-19 Mieko has been working on several different projects. She is currently performing a weekly Instagram Live show due to gigs being cancelled and so she can still perform intimate live shows. Mieko is continuing to spread her positive and creative outputs, with rearrangements of original songs and covers of inspiring artists such as Radiohead and Caribou. The show takes place every Monday evening from Mieko’s home studio set up.
Mieko is also currently running a remix competition with Street Furniture Records.
This has given fans across social channels the chance to remix her track A Change Is Coming and have their music released on Street Furniture’s label. The style and genre is completely open which allows for entries to be freely creative. This competition is open to everyone, whether you are a professional producer, musician, bedroom DJ or just dabble in creating cool sounds. With the idea to give the opportunity from isolation in the current climate to be creative and experimental with musical composition.