Interview with

Midori Hirano

MimiCof a.k.a. midori hirano is a Japanese musician, composer, sound artist and producer, born in Kyoto and now based in Ber lin, stems across a diverse range of genres and cultures. Her productions are based around the use of traditional instrumentation such as the piano or strings, but yet her works are so diverse and eclectic mixture of modern digital sounds with subtle electronic processing or field recordings. For her itʼs not about creating music in its traditional forms or cliché, but about playing, mixing and finding new ways of presenting music. She has released two albums “LushRush“(2006) and „klo:yuri“(2008) as midori hirano from MIDI Creative/noble. Her second, “klo:yuri”, saw her further develop her sound, garnering critical acclaim from various medias of the world including TIME magazine , BBC radio programs and such. In addition to her primary project as midori hirano which is based on acoustic instrumentation drawing melodic shapes and harmonies, she is doing another music project under the name of MimiCof focusing on electronics and beat production center which extends her range of music. As MimiCof moniker, she has released two albums “RundSkipper“(2011) and „KotoLyra“(2012) from PROGRESSIVE FOrM.

Facts

1: Sometimes being a fake DJ.

2: Growing up with an isolated language in an isolated country is a kind of tragedy but also valuable.

3: But still everything is hyper-connected.

Questions

What is the biggest inspiration for your music?
Everything what keeps going on around me.

How and when did you get into making music?
I started playing a piano when I was 5 years old, same as like other kids(especially girls) in my generation – It was in the middle of 80’s, this was the period when Japan saw the biggest economical growth after the second war and a large number of pianos were produced and sold in that period since having a piano in the house had been one of the typical image of „modern life“ among Japanese families(but in the end, many of those pianos were sold out as second hand after the economic bubble’s collapse in 90’s and those are now exported to other countries. I fortunately still left the one in my hometown, but I somehow exported myself to Germany instead of this:) ). My family was not an exception. But aside from that situation, I was purely enjoying playing it by myself or with friends.
But as the most of my friends were giving up doing music to do something else in teenage years, and also as I got tired with playing only other people’s music since I had been involved in classical music study, I got to be more interested in making my own music to build up my own world escaping from the loneliness.
Then I started recording some music only played by piano into tape when I was in a high school, and some years later, I got a computer and since then it has always been an open place for me to make music besides a piano.
I admit this fact of how I was tossed about by the change of the times in music, but still I’m happy with that I always can keep my own music up against the changes but also getting along with the changes.

What are your 5 favourite albums of all time?
Cocorosie : La maison de mon rêve
Glenn Gould : Glenn Gould in Salzburg
The Books : Thought For Food
Ryoji Ikeda & Carsten Nicolai : Cyclo
World’s end girlfriend : Dream’s End Come True
– but of course my favorites sometimes change time to time. and I’m always curious about other music which I still never know. Both new music or old releases.

What do you associate with Berlin?
The spacy atmosphere where I can put myself in my own creativity.

What’s your favourite place in your town?
Any places with a lot of green.

If there was no music in the world, what would you do instead?
Enjoy any noise as music.

What was the last record you bought?
gergias Horse „The Mammoth Sessions“(Fire Records)

Who would you most like to collaborate with?
I have no ideas about it yet. I rather prefer to wait for Unknown.

What was your best gig (as performer or spectator)?
as performer – I can’t define which was the best since I’ve done different types of gigs, as solo or with somebody, at the museums, small clubs or bars, concert hall and the shrine. But the gig I did at Rohsska museet in Gothenburg in 2009 was really impressive. Beautiful place of museum & beautiful people.. as spectator – Signal from raster-noton at club Metro in Kyoto, 2007.

How important is technology to your creative process?
This is just a part of my creativity. Of course I like using different effects which come from sound processing on softwares when I need it, but not try to only be a victim of it.

Do you have siblings and how do they feel about your career?
I have one older brother. Maybe he is proud of me although he doesn’t understand well about what I’m doing, but we get along very well and there never be any changes in our good relationship since our childhood. There’s nothing better than that for us.

Our Favourites: Feathers  | Transition |  Triangle

Links: Soundcloud |  midorihirano.com

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