In 1983, me and my girlfriend walked into my favourite record store, not looking for anything special, just in the mood for looking through the boxes, as we so often did back then. Right there was this strange face in this wonderful painting, looking at something we could not see.
I bought the record without listening first, had to get that album, just because I instantly loved the cover.
Turns out it was Japan – Oil on Canvas – 1983, a live album with a few unreleased tracks, by a new wave band, I had never heard of before. Later I came to love David Sylvian’s solo works, not to mention what Richard Barbieri would do with Porcupine Tree. At this point I was just stunned by having picked up this masterpiece.
Turns out at the point I discovered Japan, they had just split up, the album was mainly live tracks from their last tour, and a few studio tracks recorded by the members separately. They would reunite for the “Rain Tree Crow” one album project (1991) but this was the last Japan album.
Today I know all Japan albums, but this one still is my “Japan” album, seems to me, all the studio albums misses something spiritual, something extra, that I get from Oli on Canvas, a sense that I’m in this Asian temple, and the music is only playing in my mind to get me in the right mood, and I can’t get it out, can concentrate, for my Zen Buddhist meditation session, that I’m having with this beautiful Asian girl, dressed in orange. (wake up, wake up,finish the post !!)