Mad Japanese electro pop rock and so forth.
June 19, 2007 3:38 AM   Subscribe

Japanese music. I like Polysics and Plus-Tech Squeezebox. What else would I like? Are there any good English-language blogs about music of the Orient?
posted by stammer to Media & Arts (13 answers total) 13 users marked this as a favorite
Some of the recommendations in this thread might be worth checking out.

And, not a blog exactly, but Nippop has some useful (if brief) profiles of a good many Japanese bands.
posted by misteraitch at 4:17 AM on June 19, 2007

Marxy is a writer and musician living in Tokyo. He writes about many facets of Japanese life and culture, with Japanese pop music being a recurring theme. He gets pretty specific with the ins-and-outs of the music industry, but I find the blog interesting. It's at neomarxisme.
posted by Slothrop at 5:37 AM on June 19, 2007

From the gnod music map I'd recommend these (non-Japanese) artists:

Lightning Bolt

As far as similar Japanese music, check out OOIOO and Pizzicato Five. Especially Pizzicato Five.

Oh, and the fathers of them all, DEVO.
posted by carsonb at 6:18 AM on June 19, 2007

If you're into Jpop and are borderline ephebophilic, you might check out the Hello!Project groups: 11 Water, ROMAN, Tanpopo, Melon Kinenbi, Pucchi Moni, Mini Moni, Eco Moni, Berryz KouBou, and C-ute among others ^_^
posted by vanoakenfold at 7:00 AM on June 19, 2007

Shina Ringo.
posted by jeffmshaw at 7:21 AM on June 19, 2007

I was gonna suggest a few but them I read misteraitch's link and now I'm floored.

Seconding Slothrop on the Marxy recommendation, though. In fact leave a comment on his weblog or e-mail him and he'll probably get back to you.
posted by msittig at 7:48 AM on June 19, 2007

POLYSICS Fan? Then I'm gonna second DEVO, and pre-emptively third, fourth, fifth, and sixth it. (They're not Japanese, but they're still the best band ever.)

Also, their stuff can be hard to find, but go check out Plastics, the original quirky Japanese Electro Pop band. They're not as manic and hyper as their progeny, but you gotta know yer roots, son.

Melt-Banana is the band that got me on the J-rock kick, but start with their more recent stuff... it's more accessible. Work backwards.

Shonen Knife is a classic, but they sing in English, and they're very straightforward punk rockish.

I have heard many good things about Guitar Wolf.

Picking up the Japan For Sale compilations by Tofu Records can give you a bunch of other artists to check out. Vol. 2 is the weakest, though.
posted by SansPoint at 8:07 AM on June 19, 2007

Baby Mongoose
posted by schoolgirl report at 8:10 AM on June 19, 2007

I really enjoy UA.
posted by ikahime at 8:17 AM on June 19, 2007

Agenda is a truly wonderful english-language J-Pop blog.
posted by I EAT TAPAS at 8:22 AM on June 19, 2007 [1 favorite]

I second Shina Ringo and i'll add three suggestions, not really similar to Polysics per say but japanese rock nonetheless :

Number Girl is a cult band in Japan. They parted ways in 2002 but are still considered a big influence on the indie rock scene. Think about them as the japanese Pixies.
Their last album Num-Heavy Metallic is their best. It was produced by Dave Fridmann of Mercury Rev and Flaming Lips fame.

Yura Yura Teikoku has been around for almost 20 years. They're very popular in Japan, completely unknown in the west. It's psychedelic garage rock. They have a "best of" compilation out called 1998-2004 which sum up their more popular years.

has also split up but in the mid 90's they were very succesful. They started by doing shoegazing stuff and it strangely evolved into electronic music by the time they disbanded.
posted by SageLeVoid at 10:24 AM on June 19, 2007 [1 favorite]

GO!GO!7188. They even have some US dates coming up towards the end of the summer (though none near you).

Thirding Shiina Ringo. You may especially like the stuff she did as the leader of Tokyo Jihen (Ky├┤iku for choice).
posted by Lentrohamsanin at 7:45 PM on June 19, 2007

Best answer: The term you're looking for is Pico Pop. A great blog to check out is - the Japan Live Radio stream there should help you find some new music. Some of my faves in the genre are Mac Donald Duck Eclair and Hazel Nuts Chocolate (their album "Bewitched" was produced by one of the PTSB guys).
posted by Gortuk at 2:02 PM on June 20, 2007

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