A sizzling slice of punk rock and roll boogie action – Rangsteen / High Life split EP

Hey, this is not a review. I haven’t got the record yet. Yet (although if I’d had more than a couple of 100-yen coins to rub together at Poor Cow the other night, I’d a had). This is the product description from the Base Records website via Rangsteen blog. Enjoy and then buy the rekkid…


What’s this!?! Yeah, that’s right, it’s a slab of pure Tokyo punk rock badassfuckery smacked onto vinyl by none other than the city’s reigning kings of street rock, Rangsteen and High Life.

Out on the illustrious Stay Free label run by 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…


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

Farewell, Firestarter

Posted on Facebook by Fifi 12/7/2014…

“Has it really been 17 yrs? Well, with last night’s show, Firestarter is calling it a day. Thanks so much to everybody who bought our records and came to our shows. We really appreciate the support you’ve given us.

“We’re done for now, but who knows? We may turn up somewhere someday. You probably haven’t heard the last of Firestarter. If you hear we’re playing, please come and see us.
So long!”

Firestarter at last show

Firestarter at last show

Brain supernova – an interview with Otsuki from Smallspeaker

smallspeaker with bigspeaker

smallspeaker with bigspeaker

Here’s a short interview with Smallspeaker from Follow Up. I wanted to get this one out before I start rassling with a huger and more complex interview full of slang, idioms and other Japanese language shit Greg doesn’t know. We’re (Supersnazz) opening for ‘speaker on Nov. 28 at Shindaita Fever by the way, for the release party of their 94th album (or thereabouts). This interview and the next one were both conducted in 2012 methinks, around the time of their 2nd release, “Rock ‘N Roll Days,” which is apparently the only press they’ve ever gotten for some reason. Oh yeah, people don’t know what good music is. I Forgot.

—So this is your second album and the first came out about a year ago?

Otsuki: Yeah. On this one we’re actually a band.

—How did the current band come together?

Otsuki: Matsuoka (drummer of Keen Monkey Work) wanted to play together since the Registrators days and once he approached me about that, we started playing right away. We got Abe (bass, Back To Basics) and then played as a three piece for half year or so. Then, Tamura (bass, Neon Group / Bed Sounds) took over on bass.

—I was surprised when I heard it was Tamura. Continue reading

I get to be hell – history of Zymotics

This is the history of Zymotics, written by Masao Nakagami and published in 2005 in Shaky City. He talks about them in the present tense but they’ve since broken up. They were a pretty unique band that I never actually saw but I know them from their singles and comp tracks. zymo_1

Part 1

One band that really stands out among the bands on Needle Records is Nagoya’s Zymotics. They blow me away every time I see them live. The gut-wrenching punk rock that bursts out of these three surly individuals is the coolest.

Zymotics have been together for ten years but still haven’t put out a full-length. They’ve just put out singles and appeared on comps. The recordings don’t quite do them justice. You have to see them live to get what they’re really about. Originally called Boso Nezumi, they started out playing in more of a garage punk style, but they changed their name to Zymotics and took on a snottier punk rock style, and have since passed even that, moving into a new wave sort of territory that’s all their own. 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