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 42 of the year 2022. Enjoy the new discoveries!
ひとひら (Hitohira) ‐ human
Hitohira’s latest release, an EP titled Human, will soon be released on a physical disc, though we can already enjoy it via online streaming services and the music video below. The alternative four-piece, rock band influenced by emo and shoegaze, among others, also released a mini-album earlier this year, Seasons of Someday. — Recommended by Francisca
MAY OR MAY NOT – AWAKENER
Active since 2018, MAY OR MAY NOT are a rock band all the way from the mountainous prefecture of Gunma. The four-piece band has a distinctive style that draws inspiration from a wide range of musical genres, such as post-hardcore, emo, screamo, and alternative rock, while combining it with mostly English lyrics. To date, the band has released several singles and a mini-album, with hopefully a full album in the works. — Recommended by Francisca
吾妻律奈 (Ritsuna Azuma) – Trick or Treat
Singer-songwriter Ritsuna Azuma has been active for several years as a musician and in addition, she is also an ASMRtist. In everything she produces, she shows her deep enthusiasm for steampunk and fantasy. Trick or Treat – unquestionably a Halloween-themed song – can be found on the musician’s mini-album COCOON, which was released in October 2019. The first version of the music video can be found on Azuma’s ASMR channel, before she decided to separate her music work from her ASMR work. — Recommended by Francisca
きのホ。(Kinopo) – チャンネル (Tamashii Release)
Described as a 2.5-dimensional idol group, where the six girls exist in ‘real life’ but also have an existence in manga form, this project has caught the curiosity of music-loving people from the start in the summer of 2021, especially with their distinctive music and eye-catching music videos. The project was created through a collaboration with mangaka Kyosuke Usuta and singer-songwriter HANDSOME KENYA. In April of this year, the six-piece idol group released their first album. — Recommended by Francisca
ALPACAS – 朦朧 (Mourou)
ALPACAS are a three-piece hybrid rock band managing to fuse various musical genres with a passion, think of hardcore, alternative, and punk. To date, the band has released two singles, but it looks like the band has more in store for us this year. In this music video, a mysterious person in a rabbit suit runs through Shibuya while being chased by a radio-controlled car. — Recommended by Francisca
INNOSENT in FORMAL – EVERYBODY
A whole story has been built around the four-member rock band INNOSENT in FORMAL, it first started in 2017 with the presentation of a fictional cartoon band where the correlation was soon drawn to Gorillaz. It brought them much, but eventually, the transformation was made from animation to real life, with the band members visible and they are still doing well with their fusion of rock, hip-hop and electronic music. They even provided a few tunes for the mystery anime series Ikebukuro West Gate Park in 2020. — Recommended by Francisca
ギミテック (Gimetech) – 終電 (Shuuden)
A song about catching the last train after enjoying a great concert but also all the memories, feelings surrounding it and insecurities, while going home in the darkness of the night, it must be a feeling that many know. Alternative rock band Gimetech started activities in the spring of 2020 and released a maxi-single later that year. The linked song seems to have been around since the band’s early days and finally has a music video. — 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.