Archive for October, 2010

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J-Rock Fridays Vol. 32 The Masquerade

October 29, 2010

Looks like it’s time for another Halloween edition of J-Rock Fridays.  This time I’m only posting bands that wear masks.  I didn’t receive any suggestions last week (guess it’s time to finally shelve J-Rock Fridays) so it’s a bit shorter than I hoped.

Man With A Mission- “Don’t Lose Yourself”

Who let the dogs out?!  Er…werewolves.  Whatever they are they rock.

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Friends

October 27, 2010

myspace band of the week

My second favorite record label announced a new band signing and a slew of good Turntable Films and Hotel Mexico news last weekend.  Like all cool bands their first release will be on a dead format.

Friends is a band of 3 people from Kobe and Osaka.  They were inspired by The Beach Boys and surf music.  Second Royal will release Friends’ debut casette tape Young Days Forever by the end of they year. Four of the tracks were already available on their demo (download for free at bandcamp or SoundCloud) and two will be new.

Their music can be best be described as lo-fi surf pop. The swirling guitars are a lot of fun but the vocals sound like they were recorded under water. “Since I Made A Mistake” and “We’ll Never Stay Together” both come from their demo while “I Think I Love You” (download for free at Second Royal’s SoundCloud) is new.  There’s not a whole lot of difference in sound quality between the new and old tracks, but it’s safe to say a cassette release would be natural for this band.  The retro vibe of Friends will have you longing for days on the beach.

http://www.myspace.com/friendsjp

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Aural Vampire LIVE in Chicago

October 27, 2010

Finally a video from Aural Vampire’s Anime Central performance in Chicago Rosemont surfaces on the internet. Maybe my “walking around like a sick puppy dog” comment makes more sense now.  More pictures from Anime Central can be found on their Flickr page.  I found my head in one of them.  Evidently that was the point of the afternoon when my ninja no jutsu wore off.

In other news I finally uploaded the X Japan pics from my cell phone.  Too late to write a concert review?

http://www.myspace.com/auralvampire

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Saw 3D loves J-Rock

October 24, 2010

If you haven’t seen the tracklist for the upcoming Saw 3D Soundtrack you may be surprised that it includes not one but three J-Rock bands.  Dir en grey is getting the most attention with the exclusive track “Hageshisa to, Kono Mune no Naka de Karamituita Shakunetsu no Yami.”  Well, I wouldn’t call it exclusive if it was released as a single last year.  But maybe they released a new PV?  Not quite, but they did insert scenes from the film including Chester Bennington of Linkin Park fame being tortured to death, which may be worth a watch for some.

The other two J-Rock songs on the soundtrack are Boom Boom Satellites’ “What Goes Around Comes Around” and Wagdug Futuristic Unity’s “Ram the Crush!!!” The Boom Boom Satellites song was previously released in America on the Over and Over compilation.  On the other hand, this is the first time we’re seeing Wagdug in America, which is exciting.  The song is taken from his new album R.A.M. You can listen to the soundtrack here and pick up a copy of the CD tomorrow.

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LOST recording blog

October 24, 2010

The band LOST recently recorded a new song “The Red Leaf” for their upcoming tour.  It will be given out as a free CD at the “Discovery Tour Final” shows in November.  Check the dates on their myspace page.  Everyone else can watch a video of the band reading magazines er recording the track above.  Their second album Discovery is available now.

http://www.myspace.com/lostjapan

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Kimonos- Soundtrack To Murder

October 22, 2010

If you thought Kimonos would only showcase Leo Imai’s sexy voice you’d be wrong.  Mukai starts off “Soundtrack To Murder” with some gritty vocals.  Imai takes over half-way in and gradually turns the track more poppy with his English vocals.  The video has some interesting shadow play interspersed between closeups of Mukai and Imai’s murderous intent (watch in HD for every menacing wrinkle).

Kimonos is the side project of Mukai Shutoku (Zazen Boys) and Leo Imai.  Ichiro Yoshida (Zazen Boys) joins Kimonos on bass for this track.  Their self-titled debut album comes out November 17 in Japan.

http://www.kimonosmusic.com/

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PeopleJam

October 20, 2010

myspace band of the week

PeopleJam is a dance-rock-funk band from Tokyo seeking the next groove.  Jik and Ken (also of DirtyMindArkestra) formed PeopleJam in 2005.  Thom and Mzn joined in 2007 and Hrn in 2010.  They’ve hosted a free style dance event called JAMSTAND! in 2006 and 2009 and are currently recording an album.

The first six songs on PeopleJam’s myspace follow the same kind of dance-funk formula.  The vocals are all run through a vocoder and are highly reminiscent Eiffel 65’s Europop.  “Wake Up People” starts off this set with an energized track.  Song’s like “Vaporized” and “Nirvana” are sure to make you dance.  PeopleJam do drop the vocader in two tracks.  “Licks” has more of a traditional indie-rock flair with wild vocals in the style of the telephones while the alternate version of “Dead Livestock” drops the funk backdrop for something a little more epic.

A CD-R for Wake Up People is available at their shows but you can download the Vaporized EP for free on their website.

http://www.myspace.com/peoplejam

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J-Rock Fridays Vol. 31

October 15, 2010

Another posted-after-work edition of J-Rock Fridays.  I’m sorry I spent my afternoon at the new Salvation Army by my house.  Is anyone else creeped out by the black men in red suits?  They were ALL OVER THE PLACE.  Except they couldn’t be nicer.  They literally ran to open the door for me and my mom.  Hm.  Looks like the next J-Rock Fridays column falls just in time for Halloween Super Fun Time.  Post your favorite “masked” bands/videos in the comments and I will probably add them.  I promise not to post too many Beat Crusaders videos!

Good Morning America- 空ばかり見ていた

Ohohohohooh your “ohohohohoohs” sound so good.  But if you’re going to name yourselves after a popular western catchphrase I recommend not spelling your name out in Japanese, thanks!

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kannivalism

October 13, 2010

myspace band of the week

With a name like kannivalism, I was fully expecting a visual-kei band.  And they were at one point.  But they’ve since shed that persona and are now touring with the likes of The 50 Kaitenz.

Kannivalism banded and disbanded in 2001 as a visual kei artist.  They then formed another VK band named Baroque who invented oshare kei, basically the same thing but wearing trendy clothes.  Baroque disbanded in 2004, ten days after their debut album was released.  The original kannivalism members got back together in 2006 and released their first mini-album on Free-Will and were signed to major label avex by the summer.  They released their first album Nu age in 2007 after two singles.  Their followup was set to come out the following year, but their vocalist Ryo fell into a deep depression and the band halted activities while he was hospitalized.  They reunited for the third time in 2009.  Their second album Helios was released in 2010 and they have released two singles and a live DVD since.

Judging by their latest single “Split Recollection,” Ryo’s vocals still have that visual-kei tone.  But they’ve got this incredible mellow vibe in songs like “Helio” and “Love” that almost remind me of sleepy.ab.  Their faster songs like “Glory & you” and “Ritori” are also on the happy side of rock.  There isn’t any old material here to compare to but it’s clear that they’re an ever evolving band.

Their new single rememorari comes out in November.  Join them on Twitter, which they joined today.  Buy kannivalism CDs at CD Japan and Play-Asia.

http://www.myspace.com/kannivalism

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Byousatsu Endorphin

October 6, 2010

myspace band of the week

Thrashy thrash thrash band Byousatsu Endorphin (秒殺エンドルフィン) hails from the prefecture of Osaka.  They formed in 2006 and have a cardboard box with sharpie mouth and eyeholes for a mascot.  You can watch the guys goof off with it in the PV for “iPod is hot.”  They are signed to Tasty Records and their first album 21ideas, useless of business came out in 2009.

All of their songs on myspace are under one and a half minutes long and I imagine the rest are the same.   But I guess it doesn’t take long to get the point of “fuck the bread, eat rice” across.  “Rub His Magical Rump” probably has humorous lyrics as well.  It’s so fast who could tell.  Byousatsu Endorphin packs a lot of power in a short time.  For fans of  BBQ Chickens, Idol Punch, and Fuck You Heroes.

Download 21ideas, useless of business on Amazon MP3 or HearJapan.

http://www.myspace.com/byousatsuendorphin

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