With a large music industry such as Japan has, the second largest in the world, it is inevitable that music fans will be inundated with a profusion of good (and also less good) music from this country. It is impossible to keep track of this and write a review about it per video. But to avoid missing out on gems, it is time for a weekly list of new music videos from lesser-known Japanese musical acts that are definitely worth watching.
We are now looking back on a couple of videos that were released in week 36 of the year 2021. Enjoy the new discoveries!
WARS iN CLOSET – 花一匁 (Hana ichi-monme)
WARS iN CLOSET is the name of a trio, debuted in December 2020, where each group member writes the music and lyrics for it, creates the artwork, and even does the directing and editing of the music videos. To date, the DIY band has released five (digital) singles, filled with catchy and poppy melodies. While the band has only just emerged onto the music scene, it has already attracted quite a bit of attention with what they have released. — Recommended by Francisca
マシリト (MACHILITT) シークレットメサイア (Secret Messiah)
The in 1999 formed rock band MACHILITT came back from a recharge period of 8 years in 2017. 12 years after their previous album release, the band finally was able to release album number 5, titled 大東京音像 (DIE TOKYO ZONE). A number of guest musicians have collaborated on the album, including MANACLE vocalist Risaki Kakizaki, seen and heard in the linked music video. From the album sale, the proceeds will be donated to the live venue ANTIKNOCK, which has been refraining from business since the COVID-19 pandemic. — Recommended by Francisca
NIYOCO – へローイン (Heroin(e))
It was late 2019 when vocalist Kawase decided to start a new band featuring a powerful band sound, a fast pace, distinctive voice and catchy melodies. The rock band currently consists of three band members and has already released a number of (digital) singles. Technically, this song full of emotion has been given a new version, as it was already presented in the vocalist’s previous band. — Recommended by Francisca
Cobalt boy – Swim Good
Shortly after being formed in 2018, the band Cobalt boy was selected to perform at the second biggest music festival in Fukuoka. The four-piece released their debut album, SANSO, recently through the independent label ROSE RECORDS, which is started by Sunny Day Service singer and guitarist Keiichi Sokabe. They have been working on this album, filled with vivid melodies and city pop vibes, since last year February. — Recommended by Francisca
宇宙団 (Uchudan) – いつかは (Itsuka wa)
Uchudan can be best described as a five-piece new wave pop band. The Tokyo-based band has something quirky with them, something you can also hear back in their lyrics which are enveloped in catchy melodies that dance between new wave and progressive rock. To date, the band has released two albums, a mini-album and a couple of singles. The song Itsuka wa features for the first time a female and a male vocal harmony. — Recommended by Francisca
SULLIVAN’s FUN CLUB – 火花 (Hibana)
Formed in the summer of 2016, appeared at SUMMER SONIC 2019, won several grand prizes at music competitions, was invited for SXSW in 2020 (unfortunately did not take place) and is influenced by 90s alternative, punk, power pop. This is only a small impression of the energetic four-piece rock band SULLIVAN’s FUN CLUB from Sapporo. Their latest mini-album, titled Panta Rhei, got released last week. — Recommended by Francisca
yeti let you notice – blackout
Tokyo-based alternative rock member band yeti let you notice are an indie quartet that sing about human weakness, ugliness and deviousness. While not really sticking to one music genre, the band tries to present a certain (nostalgic) sense of the world through the music. They have been around for a while, which means that musically there is a lot to discover from this band. — Recommended by Francisca
Next week we will be back for a new list of new music videos to check out. But you can also look back to the earlier editions of this weekly article series for when you yearn for more musical gems! Want to read more about how this project started or check out the YouTube playlists? Click here for all the information.