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 selection of videos that were released in week 7 of 2023. We sincerely hope you enjoy the new discoveries!
板歯目 (BANSHIMOKU) ‐ くそったれ人生最悪の (Kusottare Jinsei Saiaku No)
The past year was a great one for BANSHIMOKU, the three-piece rock band that released several music videos to further build a fan base and on top of that, they managed to release not one, but two full-length albums to show their power and passion. They are unstoppable. What will 2023 bring? We are really looking forward to it. Several shows in Japan have already been announced, which is only nice considering this seems to be the perfect band to see live. — Recommended by Francisca
DeNeel – Vision
We have written about this four-piece indie band DeNeel before, described as neo-mixture rock full with nostalgia and elements you will hear in other Japanese songs with a twist of their own, with the catchphrase of Osaka Revival Pop. By now, they have been active in Tokyo for several years and have been busy creating music and, of course, performing on stage. It’s interesting how the band is evolving over the years and it remains to be seen whether a new album is in the works. — Recommended by Francisca
シロイソラ (Shiroisora) – ice flower
Mainly active in Tokyo, the four-piece band Shiroisora got formed in 2017 with the concept of “not a pop band, but a girl band”. The band’s music is intended for people who are living their lives while refusing to turn away from suffocating and breaking emotions. So now you know what to expect from this band. After releasing several singles, they will release their very first full-length album in a few days, titled 燐光 (Phosphorescence). — Recommended by Francisca
JILUKA – OVERKILL
It seems that the metal band JILUKA started experimenting with what they refer to as electronic gothic metal in an effort to show that it will take over the globe. The first single release in this direction was BLVCK, which was well received by fans of the four-piece visual kei band, and now they have arrived at OVERKILL. In addtion, they have collaborated again with Jeff Dunne, who has worked with metal bands like Motionless in White, Emmure, and many more. — Recommended by Francisca
Mellow Youth – Es
The music video shows the band’s lead singer Ryunosuke Ishimori being persuaded to buy a substance to become a rock star, but is that really necessary if you listen to this song? Formed in 2017, with an album and more than two handfuls of (digital) singles under their belt, this five-piece band makes music in the realms of pop, rock and jazz, and this first new song from 2023 is what you might call straight-up rock. — Recommended by Francisca
KAFUNÉ – 大人ごっこ (Otonagokko)
The music unit KAFUNÉ, consisting of vocalist Jinsei and trackmaker Takakuzo, started activities in May 2020 in Tokyo. The name KAFUNÉ has its origins in Portuguese, but for the two young musicians it expresses the desire to create music that has never existed in Japan before, and songs that people can relate to packed into catchy pop songs and strong punchlines. In March, the duo will release their first EP, ごっこ遊び (Gokko Asobi). — Recommended by Francisca
それでも世界が続くなら (Sore Demo Sekai Ga Tsudukunara) – 流星群 (Meteor Shower)
This alternative rock band has already had quite an adventure, starting in 2011 as an indie band, they have been with a major label twice and in between without, with a break on top of that, but since 2021, the four-piece band is back and from this year they have their own indie label, YouSpica. Says maybe little about the band, but this song is full of the negative emotions that almost every person has encountered in life. In addition, the first full-length album in two years (and the first with the current line-up) is on the way, with a release date set for May. — 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.