During the summer of 1998, Japanese experimental artist Sachiko M radically changed her musical approach. A few months earlier she was mostly working with samplers (as is exemplified on another Amoebic release, Four Focuses), like Ikue Mori and Diane Labrosse. Then, in September she recorded this Sine Wave Solo, pioneering the re-entry of sine wave generators, the most basic form of electronic sound, in avant-garde music. This CD contains 40 minutes of sine waves, gradually moving from rich and complex material (the opener "Don't Move") to numbingly minimal pieces. Some people react physically to sine waves and they may experience discomfort (such as nausea) during "Don't Touch," ten minutes of high-pitched non-modulating tones, and "Don't Stop," nine minutes of sub-audible low warbles. The last track, "Don't Do," is made of one ear-piercing high tone turned on and off while an additional filter is also being turned on and off. These are extremely minimal experiments, interesting for their complete rejection of technology, but profoundly displeasing, even for the most dedicated and understanding avant-garde fan, with the exception of the first two tracks. These are enjoyable, especially "Don't Ask": Sachiko M uses very short low tones to construct a glitch-like groove at a time when glitch artists were still learning how to use a laptop. Her sine waves would be put to better use in group context, like Otomo Yoshihide's I.S.O. and Cathode projects. As the years go by, Sine Wave Solo remains an item interesting only for the completist, the collector, and the masochist.
AllMusic Review by François Couture