Archive for August, 2010

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We are the Beck

August 31, 2010

The first nugget of music from the live action Beck film has been released.  Snippets of “Evolution” can be heard in the original Beck movie trailers, but this is the first time we’ve heard Chiba’s vocals.  The video gives us a first look at Beck’s lives as well as new movie clips.  “Evolution” does not appear in the original BECK: Mongolian Chop Squad anime and it hasn’t been announced if any of the anime songs will be carried over.  A listing for the soundtrack has popped up on CD Japan and Play-Asia; however, it does not include “Evolution” or any of the band songs.   Beck opens in Japan this weekend.

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Posthumous Nujabes: Homeward Journey

August 31, 2010

The first of Nujabes’ unreleased work has hit the internet.  The appropriately titled “Homeward Journey” is a collaboration with fellow Hyde Out Productions artist Uyama Hiroto.  The song was released on a 12″ record with two other versions.  There are plans to release an album of unfinished work later this year or 2011.  Talk to this guy if you want to take part in the Nujabes documentary.

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Hotel Mexico

August 25, 2010

myspace band of the week

Hotel Mexico are here to blow your earlobes.  They’re not from Mexico, but they’re the latest in a string of awesome bands from Second Royal Records.

Hotel Mexico hails from Kyoto and began writing songs in 2008.  Many members of the band are also club DJs.  They put out a cassette tape and a live VHS earlier this year and released their debut mini-album His Jewelled Letter Box last week.  “Its Twinkle” is their first single.  It has a nice, spacey intro before a deluge of electronic boops and muffled vocals.  The kind of track Tom Delonge wished he could do with Angels & Airwaves.  “Do you Do you HAIA” wasn’t ready in time for the mini-album release, but you can download it for free at the bottom of this post.  Just as the previous song, it’s full of dreamy riffs and retro synths that will keep you dancing all night.

You can download both songs and a remix at Second Royal’s SoundCloud page.  Pick up His Jewelled Letter Box at Jet Set Records and get a free sticker and a CD-R with two remixes by NITES.

http://www.myspace.com/hotelmexico

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J-Rock Fridays Vol. 27

August 20, 2010

Friday!  Watch your J-Rock videos.  Then go see Scott Pilgrim vs. The World!

Isobe Masafumi- “Do we know?”

Isobe Masafumi, formerly of Husking Bee and Mars Eurythmics, has decided to go solo and got Toru Hidaka of Beat Crusaders to tag along and produce his first single.  It’s a fun pop song with plenty of screeching synths.  The single release, which has a very Beat Crusaders-esque cover, also features peeps from Asian Kung-Fu Generation, Asparagus, and Cubismo Grafico Five.

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Nature Living

August 18, 2010

myspace band of the week

Screamo is a delicate word.  But that’s what I’ve associated Nature Living with since I found them on purevolume ages ago.  Their second album Anonymous came out in Japan today so now’s a good time to bring them up again.

Nature Living formed in 1998 and their debut was the Thirst for Lust mini-album in 2000.  They released their first album Thereof in 2006 from Theory&Practice Records and a cover album After All in 2008.  They’ve released split albums with FACT, Waterweed, LOST, Evylock, and others.  In 2008 they provided “Vacancy” for the anime Xam’d: Lost Memories with 14-year-old Kylee on vocals.  Their new album will be released on Savi Records.

“Shadow of Truth” and the “Walk Upon Thorns” and “Use To Be Sad” snippets come from their latest album.  It’s classic Nature Living.  Nice violin intro, catchy chorus, an electronic beat in the background.  I don’t hear any screaming but that’s okay.  The rest of the songs on myspace are the singles from past albums and mini-albums and their cover of Madonna’s “Material Girl.”  Nature Living haven’t changed too much over the years but they’re still one of my favorite screamo bands from Japan.

Overseas fans can pick up some Nature Living CDs at Interpunk.  Download Anonymous at HearJapan.

http://www.myspace.com/natureliving

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Cornelius vs. Beck vs. Scott Pilgrim

August 16, 2010

It seems like a waste to spend a Scott Pilgrim post on a single song but this is a J-music blog after all.  So I stayed for the credits and found out what Cornelius did for the Scott Pilgrim film.  Cornelius does the music for the Katayanagi Twins, or Ramona’s evil ex #5 and 6.  Yes, the Japanese techno twins.  How racist.

“Katayanagi Twins vs. Sex Bob-Omb” comes at a pivotal point in the film where Sex Bob-omb faces the evil exes in a mad rock vs. techno battle of the bands.  There’s CG dragons and apes and it’s so awesome.  Spinner says Cornelius was what inspired Edgar Wright’s scene to begin with.

Beck does the music for Sex Bob-Omb, with the actor giving the vocals.  “Threshold” is the song used in the battle.  The song was released on Nigel Godrich’s Original Score Soundtrack, which has only been released digitally so far.

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World is indeed “an epic of epic epicness.”  Even happiplatypus liked it.  But I guess America rather watch balding old men blow shit up.

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noughts and exes is mixing

August 16, 2010

Looks like noughts and exes just wrapped up mixing their followup to Act One, Scene One.  Joshua Wong was nice enough to record his adventures in Holland with producer Martijn Groeneveld (buddhistson), riding bikes in Utrecht, going to the DJ Shadow show, buying cheese, and occasionally working.  Hopefully we’ll hear some new songs soon.

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world’s end girlfriend- “Les Enfants du Paradis”

August 13, 2010

On this Friday the 13th, world’s end girlfriend presents his creepy new video for “Les Enfants du Paradis.”  The video centers on a young girl, who may be a classically trained ballerina or a The Last Exorcism stunt-double, doing a spastic dance for seven and a half minutes.  It certainly fits this  out of character track and is beautifully choreographed with stunning cinematography.  The song (download for free here) is the first single off Seven Idiots due out in September on WEG’s newly formed label Virgin Babylon Records.

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Envy- Recitation + US Tour

August 13, 2010

Envy will release their fifth album Recitation on September 22 in Japan and Europe.  Temporary Residence will release the album on October 12 in America.  Pre-orders for the US release will go up on September 1 on Temporary Residence’s website in CD and 2xLP format.  The band will tour the US in September and October with Touche Amore,  And So I Watch You From Afar, La Dispute, and Trash Talk to support the album.  Tour dates are below.

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deepsea drive machine

August 11, 2010

myspace band of the week

Deepsea drive machine is an electronic band from Kashiwa.  Shinya Nishi (bass) and Kohtaro Uno (guitar) formed the band in 1998 and were inspired by hardcore punk bands.  They released their first album Saion in 2002 and the Sonar For Life EP in 2005.  In 2008, Shinya and Jun Izawa (LITE) started Parabolica Records and began releasing albums from Japanese and foreign artists.  Earlier this year deepsea drive machine released the Wayless EP through Parabolica.

The first five tracks on myspace are from Wayless.  It sounds similar to sakanaction at first, but with a lot less vocals.  “Ray of Light” and “ミチナキセカイ” are nice spacey dance tracks.  Some of the more guitar heavy tracks like “Jag” and “Secret Path” recall the direction LITE have been heading in their last two EPs.  Their older tracks are pretty similar to their new material, but I would definitely throw “JADA” in the post-rock category.

Deepsea drive machine is on the electronic side of post-rock, with more spacey than dancy tunes.  The beats are catchy enough to keep you awake on the highway, but relaxing enough for studying music.  More please.

http://www.myspace.com/deepseadrivemachine

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