On Saturday 11th December Japanese techno maven Risa Taniguchi debuts her live show at MUTEK Tokyo. Risa is arriving at the forefront of the dark techno wave that has washed over the underground in recent years. The Tokyo born – and based – artist has spent the last four years cultivating a lo-fi sound of distorted textures, fizzing synths and a quietly burning energy, which consumes all who hear it. Preferring to play sets which are “late night, for the weirdos”, Risa has a knack for getting crowds in a nocturnal trance, before delivering shocks and surprises with a curious motif or unpredictable element. For those who like to cut loose in a dark environment, she is the perfect selector.
In the studio as well as the club, Risa focuses on the drums, programming kicks that bring visceral and often aggressive thrills next to a uniquely addictive layer of well designed snares and hi hats. Her signature has become her own subtle and intriguing vocal samples, best heard on Slipped My Mind and Enclozed. She adds layers of acid bass and an always raw, edgy aesthetic. Having experienced them first hand whilst living in London, in 2010, Risa also has an enduring love of underground UK bass sounds, which can be heard in many of her tracks. The multi-talented act is also formally trained and a skilled player of the piano, who continues to play daily. She is a “classical music nerd” too, but of course prefers to explore the minor rather than major end of the scales.
Since her first release back in 2018, Risa has attracted high profile interest from A-list players Amelie Lens, Dense & Pika, Pan Pot, Perc and Daniel Avery; has hit the Top 5 of the Beatport’s Leftfield Techno Chart and played everywhere from SXSW Festival in the US to De Marktkantine in Amsterdam, Watergate in Berlin and of course all the most revered spaces all across Japan including Contact, Womb, and Vent.
Despite the pandemic, 2020 has proven to be a high watermark for Risa as she has delivered a continuous flow of new music, primarily on Pan Pot’s Second State and on Dense & Pika’s Kneaded Pains. With both of these mighty techno duos giving Risa their support and platforms, it has enabled her to start taking her first major footsteps into Europe, picking up her first headline bookings in Hungary and the UK.