Koto is an Italian synth pop group that originally consisted of Anfrando Maiola and Stefano Cundari, later with Michiel van der Kuy too.
Their most popular songs were "Visitors", "Dragon's Legend", "Chinese Revenge" and "Jabdah", released in 1983-1988.
Koto is often associated with a genre of music called Spacesynth, a music style streamed from Space Disco. Unfortunately, it has been reported that Stefano Cundari died some time between 1991 and 1992 from a kidney cancer.
Anfrando Maiola and Stefano Cundari helped to form Memory Records, an Italian record company which specialised in mainly Italo Disco releases. Koto's "Chinese Revenge" was the first record to be released on the Memory label. It sold over 10,000 copies in Italy alone.
Both artists also helped to write, mix, and produce for a range of other artists signed to the Memory Records label, including "Challenger" and "Happy Song" for the band Baby's Gang. Stefano Cundari is also known for his participation in the group "Hipnosis" from 1982-1987.
Following their successful debut with "Chinese Revenge" both Maiola and Cundari helped remix the Vangelis track "Pulstar" for Hipnosis. Their remix of Pulstar reportedly sold over 200,000 copies worldwide.By 1986 the mood of the record buying public was starting to change. House Music was becoming increasingly popular, and the demand for Italo Disco tracks appeared to be in decline. Memory Records, along with other Italo record companies of the time, started to suffer financially. Although attempts were made to respond to the changes by releasing House Music and Eurobeat tracks, the change was not successful and Memory Records went out of business.
In 1989, the German record label ZYX Music bought the rights to the entire Memory Records catalog, including the "Koto" name and recordings. They then brought in Dutch record producer Michiel van der Kuy to re-record and remix some of the old Koto tracks. He then released several other albums under the alias "Koto" in which he remixed science fiction movie themes and other songs, like "Koto Plays Synthesizer World Hits" and "Koto Plays Science-Fiction Movie Themes". Michiel van der Kuy is also a member of the group Laserdance and producer for the likes of Alice DeeJay.
In recent years, Anfrando Maiola won back the rights to the "Koto" name and continues to produce music under this name. His latest tracks were: "Koto Is Still Alive" (2001) and "Blow The Whistle" (2003).
Did you know.... The word KOTO in Japan refers to a Japanese musical instrument / or a traditional dress. Kōtō, Tokyo, is also a ward in Tokyo, Japan
RETRO DISCO Hi-NRG