Tsukemen Of Death – an (old) interview with Supersnazz

Folks, with Supersnazz playing our last show on May 20, I dug out this li’l interview we did right after we put out our record “Get Down” in 2008. Enjoy!

At the time of writing, July 16, 2008, Supersnazz is eighteen years old. They’re putting out their seventh album, “Get Down,” on Meerkat Records (Vivid Sound). The album is infused with the energy of its new member, Greg, and its new label and it doesn’t have a second of filler. The day after they finished mixing, I sat down with the band to talk about the album and a whole bunch of other random stuff.

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Interview by Haruko Shiozawa

Shiozawa
“Congrats on finishing the record!”

Everybody
“Thanks! Cheers!”

(Glasses of beer, oolong tea and Black Hoppy are raised, cheers’d and glugged)

Tomoko
“Whew… we’re done.” 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…

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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)

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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.  

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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

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.

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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

Pop for life – A reeeeally old interview with Supersnazz

Here’s an interview with Supersnazz I dug up somewhere… Loft to be exact. Considering the ch-ch-ch-changes the band is going through, I thought it was apropos. It was done right after Invisible Party came out in 2003 (I thinks) and I’ll (prob’ly) post a review of IP I found for my next post.

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Supersnazz is a band Japan is proud to claim for its own. They’ve just released their second album after undergoing a member change that rendered them 2:2 in terms of gender ratio. This release shows the new lineup growing even tighter and will surely secure the band’s place in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. I talked to them about the new album and their high-energy live shows. (Interview by Jin Nakamura)

──It’s been two years since your last release. We did an interview when the last record came out and it just happened to be on 9/11, after which you guys went on a US tour. I have to assume that was a little bit weird?

SPIKE Actually, it was pretty much like always.

SHOE Yeah, because it was a West Coast tour.

TOMOKO People there were saying things like, Continue reading

Stop Breaking My Heart – An Interview with Blockbusters

Here’s an interview with Blockbusters by Saga-young from August 2011, originally published here. Blockbusters are one of the hundreds of bands Inagaki plays in and in my humble opinion, the best. The interview is mostly about the band’s history but don’t worry, there are some philosophical ruminations on rock and roll as well.

Can the band members please introduce themselves?

Inagaki: I’m Inagaki on vocals and guitar. I’m also in Rockbottom. I’ll be doing one show with the Treeberrys.

Saboten: I’m Seiichi Takagi on bass.

Hagi: I’m Hagi. I do drums and backup vocals.

Ozaki: I’m gonna do it idol style…

I’m guitarist Koji Ozaki. My birthday is Friday, September 13, 1968. My blood type is AB and my favorite Continue reading