A new wave interview with Radio Shanghai

There was an era in the 2nd half of the 70s and 1st half of the 80s right after punk hit that folks call “post punk” or “new wave.” To put it really basically, a slew of bands took that punk rock energy, creativity and anger, and busted out all kinds of unexpected sounds that flew in the face of what the mainstream media was telling us “punk” was supposed to be. Just when you think this is a bygone era and start getting a little nostalgic, up steps Kyoto’s Radio Shanghai. With their first album coming out on Loft Records, I had a chance to talk with self-appointed frontman Suzu.

This is the intro translated. I thought I couldn’t’a said it better myself, so I left it as-is. But FYI, actually Radio Shanghai isn’t around today, but its ex-members still fly the flag with their current bands Liquid Screen and Boys Order.

(Interview by Umezo Kato)

Radio Shanghai

“We do it our own way”

Suzu: (Looking at the profile written by the label on the record): Hmmm… Okay, I see. I dunno, we’ve never had a profile like this written for us before. Continue reading

Rock tonight – the story of Stairs

Here’s an interview with Tappei (mostly) from Stairs that Nakagami-san gave me from the vaults. It’s from June 2009 and was recorded at an undisclosed Tokyo location that probably has cheap drinks. Here’s Nakagami-san’s intro…

a9eb50d3d5ceb9f0633682a04fb8aef3

It’s never really occurred to me to interview the Stairs because I was in their previous band and I know pretty much everything about them, and I went to high school with the ever-quirky Iizuka. So, what on earth could ask them about? But once we started talking, things started getting interesting. Stairs are starting to amass a pretty big following and they have a 7-inch coming out on Needle Records. In this interview, we mostly talk about the formation and history of the band.

Tappei There was a guy I used to work with, he was a real business type but he had some kind of connection with Kei Ogura*, and he said, “Hey, let’s go play on the street in Shin-Yokohama.” That was back when you didn’t see so many people doing that. Continue reading

Frantic Stuffs – punk is a toy that kills

The mighty Frantic Stuffs from Osaka, Japan. Here’s an interview with one of the baddest-assed punk rock bands in Japan today.

After rockin’ for 15 years, Osaka punk band Frantic Stuffs is finally putting out its first LP “Last Wave,” on Episode Sounds.

Armed with nothing more than a raging passion for the music they love, the ‘Stuffs have unleashed a record upon the world that’s a stew of the style they’ve developed over the last decade and a half. If you ask them, they’d say they just play the good ol’ straight-up punk rock of old, but it’s not some boring purist nostalgia punk act. When you see the frenzy they whip up at their shows, the artificial lines between “punk,” “rock and roll,” “hardcore,” and etc. etc. fall away and that’s their unique charm.

There are a lotta bands around these days flying their “proto-punk” influence flag (espesh in the US of A) but the ‘Stuffs have been doing that all along and they stumbled upon it naturally. They’ve developed their style time, slowly absorbing the influence of their favorite rock and roll, and then letting their own mutant brand of punk rock and roll ooze out naturally.

“Last Wave” is a collection of 10 songs that condense all of those punk rock influences from the 70s to today with all of its blood, sweat and other bodily fluids it’s best not to acknowledge or name.

(Interview by Tep / Photos by Yada)

FranticStuffs

What kind of bands have been the most influential on Frantic Stuffs?

Naoki (guitar): I guess I’d say so-called “proto-punk,” Detroit rock like Continue reading

Tweezers bring the rock to Osaka

Some bands wax philosophical and go on long speeches expounding the true essence of rock and roll and what it all means in these interviews. The Tweezers don’t, not in this one anyway. This quick interview was done before they went and played Osaka at the end of last year. None of that philosophy crap here, pal. Just talk about rockin’ and partyin’ and havin’ a good time.  

tweezers2

Joe Zip: Please introduce the band.

Fifi: I think we got together around 1994. We were hanging out after a show drinking and the booze brought on the whole “let’s start a band” discussion. We broke up around three years after. Four years ago, we got back together to play a friend’s wedding party and we’ve been playing ever since.  Continue reading

Thunder Rock City – the history of the Thunderroads

The Thunderroads just tore it up at Burger Boogaloo. I stumbled across this quick history of the band and its messianic complex here on the band’s blog. For those who don’t know, Rockin’ Jesus is the name of the Thunderroads bassist. He’s not talking about a religious conversion.Enjoy!

IMG_7322

We really became the Thunderroads when Jesus came along…

In November 2001, my band Accel 4 decided to Continue reading

Beat Caravan “Odd Harmony” liner notes

This is the probably the greatest album released in 2015. Well, okay, I guess I wouldn’t know since I generally ignore all music made since 1996. But anyhow, it’s really darn good and the more you listen to it, the better it becomes. Here are the CD liner notes just in case you got the record in non-digital format.

CVti-2gU8AA8z_r

Lady Queen

The album’s opener is probably most straight-up rock’n’roller the band has ever done. It’s got a strong beat and it feels like the band is frolicking through the song, only to be rent asunder by a wild, angular guitar solo, which calls to mind NRBQ guitarist Al Anderson’s old band Wildweeds. It certainly kicks off the album right.

Black Tea Eyes

One of the cool things about Continue reading

Young Parisian’s new order

This is a post from Young Parisian’s All That Glitters blog written by frontman Tsuneglam Sam…
Young Parisian hasn’t had even one change in membership since forming in 2002, but for various reasons bassist Marsha is taking an indefinite break and drummer Hero as well…

… but no taking a break for the other three.

I’m the vocalist so it’s not like I’m going to go and sing with a bunch of other bands, and if I’m not on stage, there’s no point in going on living.

So, after about three minutes of intense and sometimes heated deliberation, we decided we needed some help.Well, we’ve already played our first show as Young Parisian’s “new order,” and here’s the lineup:

YoungParisian1 Continue reading