Japanese Music

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Japanese Music

Postby Rakim » Fri Sep 13, 2013 5:56 pm

I'm sure most of us here know at least a couple Japanese songs. So why not recommend each other some new tunes or just discuss the ones we already like?

I actively listen to a shit ton of different genres of music so any and all suggestions will be appreciated. :D In return I will give suggestions to anyone who asks if I can.

Now let's start this thread off right with some punk by numbers:
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Kon'nichiwa by Shonen Knife

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Re: Japanese Music

Postby OL » Sat Sep 14, 2013 1:48 am

Great topic, though I don't actually know how many replies it'll get. Might be a little niche, aside from the occasional soundtrack song or anime theme. But I could post over and over with a ton of stuff (there was a years-long period there where I listened to almost nothing but Japanese music), so I'll try to keep it up.

Acidman's a great little band. I haven't listened to anything from them in a couple years (need to get back to them), but the stuff I originally fell in love with is all fantastic. They've got this great smoothness to most of their works that never fails to bring my mood up a notch or two. Fantastic stuff.


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(^^The second one is the first song I really tried hard to learn on guitar. I'm still shit at playing anything smoothly, but it's a fun little tune to play around with either way :) )
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Re: Japanese Music

Postby Rakim » Sat Sep 14, 2013 3:32 am

Knew the name, but I've never listened to them before. Old Sunset is my favorite of the two. Like you said it does have a certain smoothness to it. Don't think I could pull off playing that main riff, though. I guess I'll just stick to rocking out on rhythm. Slightly off topic, but what kind of guitar are you shredding with OL?


edit: I almost forgot to include the obligatory youtube video.

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An 80s pop classic by Crystal King.
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Re: Japanese Music

Postby silent killer » Sat Sep 14, 2013 6:08 am

I can go on for a bit on this topic. Just a bit. Now, it's true, a good deal of what I listen to is compiled from bands that had appeared on anime OP and ED. If I like what I hear I usually end up digging deeper into their catalog, when it exists.

The certain bands in question:
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And then there are these ones:
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Don't even know how I found out about these two. That first one may have been a recommendation from my last.fm. Apparently it knows my tastes in music better than I do
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Re: Japanese Music

Postby OL » Sat Sep 14, 2013 12:14 pm

Rakim wrote:Slightly off topic, but what kind of guitar are you shredding with OL?

Eh, nothing fancy in the least. I still just have an old beginner Fender. It's about as barebones as can be, but it works well enough if you just want to play around with a tune. Not really a performance model at all though (as if I would ever be good enough to actually perform anything :lol: ).
That Old Sunset tune actually ain't too hard to play though, it just sounds like it is. It's really just three main finger shapes and a little movement at the end. Only part that takes getting used to is the way the guy plucks the notes out, using both a pick and his middle and ring fingers. It's really fun once you get it down though.

I generally consider The Gazette to be my favorite band, as giddy as I get every time they release something new. They aren't everyone's cup of tea, especially since they're part of the visual kei scene (most westerners can't get past the usual androgyny of it), but to me they're pretty much tops as far as high production values and catchy metal tunes go.
This first one might be my favorite single by them overall. Instrumentally it's a little more technically-demanding than many of their other works, and I think it hits just the right balance between metal riffage and a sort of "radio-friendly" catchiness.


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And this next one is just fun as hell. Feels a bit like the more "chaotic" vibe that many of their songs had closer to the start of their career, but with all the high-quality production of their new stuff. Can't get much better than this when it comes to B-sides (seriously, this should have been its own single).

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Re: Japanese Music

Postby mue 26 » Sat Sep 14, 2013 1:27 pm

Another great thread from Rakim. I've been trying to get into Japanese music for years now, and have still largely failed to penetrate it, so I look forward to everyone's contributions. I do like me a bit of smooth Jazzy Japanese shit:

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Re: Japanese Music

Postby ShenmueTree » Sat Sep 14, 2013 2:30 pm

I could be here all day doing this so I'll just name a few.

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[video] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7ftN4qcUymE[/video]

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Re: Japanese Music

Postby OL » Sat Sep 14, 2013 2:49 pm

^^Only three vids per post. If you need to put more, use spoilers. ;-)

9Goats Black Out was a great band, while they lasted. Disbanded earlier this year, I believe, and it's a real shame. Their style is hard to describe, because even though they use a pretty standard instrumental setup, there's just something so... different about what they do with it. The best word I can come up with to describe them is "artistic." They really sound unlike any other Japanese band I've heard.
Hard to narrow it down and only show a scant few songs, because there's a lot of interesting stuff to pick from. But almost none of it sounds particularly mainstream-friendly. This is the kind of stuff I hear and automatically know the artists are doing it because they actually enjoy it and want to express something, rather than just making an easy buck.


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Re: Japanese Music

Postby mue 26 » Sun Sep 15, 2013 9:59 am

I was feeling kind of shitty, unsure of certain of my life decisions, and anxious last night. I really needed something to pick myself up and reassure myself, then I thought of this thread and realised exactly what I needed: some Jazztronic and Monday Michiru! Haha. I literally felt like 100% better after listening to some. Some good ol' comfort music. I Love Monday Michiru, she's a straight up specialist in feel good easy listening, you can pretty much listen to anything by her and feel perked up! Plus, anyone who calls their album 'Soulception' gets an A++ in my book. She looks pretty great for 50 years old too! I need me a broad like that (by that I don't mean a 50 yr old, I mean someone like a young Michiru). Word up.

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Re: Japanese Music

Postby Rakim » Sun Sep 15, 2013 10:24 am

If you need a pick me up this song should do the trick. Jazzy hip hop from Rip Slyme:

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Its called "Blow" and the lyrics are all about sending your troubles away to the wind in favor of good vibes and the promise of tomorrow. Does that sound super Japanese or what?


Oh yeah and if you're more into the smoother stuff I suggest checking out Original Love. The dude behind that group has mastered recreating the 60s and 70s sounds of the west in Japanese form. For starters check out this song and then the one in my signature.

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Re: Japanese Music

Postby south carmain » Sun Sep 15, 2013 1:16 pm

The inevitable
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also capsule have some pretty good electronic songs
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Re: Japanese Music

Postby mue 26 » Sun Sep 15, 2013 3:10 pm

Good post, Rakim. Enjoyed all that stuff. I quite like this Original Love tune I just found too, equal parts brilliant and bizarre:

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Speaking of brilliant and bizarre:

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Re: Japanese Music

Postby Henry Spencer » Mon Sep 16, 2013 1:15 pm

More of Japanese electronic music fan, myself. Here's some of the ones that I listen to:

Hora. He's formerly one half of a group called, "Rudolf Steiner" (he's the composer of all the music for that group). Anyway, the guy got really sick and composed what he thought would be his last ever album. You can sort of tell he poured his heart and soul into the final product. This is a track from said album:


His musical style is normally gothic-electronic sounds but in this album, with more classical influence mixed in.

This one has a more gothic sound:
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He is apparently now recovering from his illness, so as a fan, I'm obviously glad about this. At least it got such a great album from the guy, regardless.

Also, I am a big, big fan of Susumu Hirasawa (and his band P-Model), who's mostly known for being the composer on anime director Satoshi Kon's work (Paranoia Agent, Paprika etc) as well as the composer for most things "Berserk", the dark fantasy manga (namely, he was the composer on the anime series and the games). As much as I love his work on those, I'm more of a fan of his solo work. Initially inspired by prog rock bands in the 70s and 80s, he later turned his work into an electronic music work, incredibly influenced by classical music and sometimes rock.

The good thing about Hirasawa is, that he changes his style frequently, so there's no real way to describe his music, some of it is rock, some of it ethnic folk, some of it intense electronic; the mainstay of his style though, is the ethereal sounds. I think the guy has perfected mixing electronic music with classical. He always creates these amazing atmospheres, that I just cannot put into words. His work as "P-Model" is confusing, since his work in the 80s and 90s was a collab effort between him and three/four members of a band (who started out as a punk rocker group, before changing into an electro pop group and THEN they disbanded to pursue solo efforts, leaving just Hirasawa to compose music in his specific styles and then turned it into an experimental electro music brand which Hirasawa remixed all of the group's music...figure that one out!)

The guy also sings in ancient languages (as well as sometimes in Thai) that even ardent fans in Japan still cannot figure out what he is singing. So this isn't a case of "how can you like music you don't understand" when even the fans over there don't understand what he is singing at times, either...

I'll below put in spoiler tags some of my favourites, with descriptions:

P-Model (when Hirasawa was remixing the group's songs, to the point they sounded nothing like the original)
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Big classical influence on this one:
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I don't know how to even describe this one, but I love it:
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Industrial influence in this, with some nice guitar work later on:
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Experimental Ethnic folk w/ some really nice guitar work:
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Sounds like perfect Winter/snow music to me, really like this one:
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Beautiful piano piece from his composition work (from the film Millennium Actress):
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Re: Japanese Music

Postby Rakim » Fri Oct 04, 2013 2:27 am

Here's a popular enka/kayoukyoku/whatever song from the '70s. Its still well known, from what I gather, so its gotta be good.
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You may recognize the singer as he played Son Goku in the TV Drama version of Saiyuuki or as it was known in the west, Monkey.

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Re: Japanese Music

Postby Raithos » Sat Oct 05, 2013 7:46 pm

Flagitious Idiosyncrasy in the Dilapidation. Pretty talented grindcore from Japan. At one time it was an all female group. Saw them earlier this year and they had a male guitarist. Not sure if he was just filling in or what.

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