The New Mastersounds hone a jazz-funk style at gigs

Dec 1, 2011

The New Mastersounds hone a jazz-funk style at gigs

The New Mastersounds have many old friends in Japan. The British four-piece was first noticed on these shores by fans of Scottish Northern Soul and funk DJ Keb Darge’s “Deep Funk” series of compilations in the early 2000s, and an impressive live resume has ...

Nov 25, 2011

Self-Defense Forces to put on air show in Gifu

Japan’s Air Self-Defence Forces are inviting crowds to Gifu for a Sunday stroll to peek inside jet engines and admire their aircraft as they take to the skies for formation flybys and acrobatic displays — earplugs are not included. The base, 35 km from ...

'Noh Masks and Costumes from the Mitsui Collection'

Nov 25, 2011

"Noh Masks and Costumes from the Mitsui Collection"

Showing approximately 100 noh masks and costumes drawn from the Mitsui Memorial Museum’s collections, this exhibition was curated to present the “profound and subtle beauty” of a uniquely Japanese art form. Master mask-carver Kazumichi Hashioka’s donation of eight masks and 100 volumes of Genna-uzuki-bon ...

Balloons over  Biwa make for beautiful pics

Nov 25, 2011

Balloons over Biwa make for beautiful pics

Sleep in and you’ll miss it. Pilots are briefed at 6 a.m., and 30 minutes later, propane burners will blast and fabric will unfurl as hot-air-balloon teams soar above Lake Biwa in Shiga Prefecture this weekend. From Omi-Shirahama beach, the hot air balloons hope ...

Folksy gig is family friendly

Nov 18, 2011

Folksy gig is family friendly

There’s a folk-flavored feast for the ears happening this Sunday afternoon, with you — and your kids — invited. Husband-and-wife duo Nature Airliner (comprising Canadian musician Laurier Tiernan and Japanese vocalist Eiko Hosaka) will hold the latest in their “Presents” series at Crawfish, Akasaka, ...

Fukuoka's got talent

Nov 18, 2011

Fukuoka's got talent

A cappella group ALT48 have far fewer members than the teen-idol group from Tokyo, but they do have something extra. For unlike AKB48, they are eligible for Fukuoka Now magazine’s talent show for non-Japanese, and the assistant language teachers hope to win the ¥100,000 ...

'Emerging Master 1: Makoto Aida 'Be it Art or not Art'

Nov 11, 2011

"Emerging Master 1: Makoto Aida "Be it Art or not Art"

Tokyo Wonder Site begins its “Emerging Master” series with Makoto Aida — the artist who famously goaded Disney lawyers with crazed and sexualized depictions of Mickey and Minnie Mouse, and who has garnered controversy as much as acclaim. But with his anti-establishment career and ...

Casiokids won't waste a second while in Japan

Nov 10, 2011

Casiokids won't waste a second while in Japan

With saucepans, a bowl, a wine-glass high-hat and some chopsticks to playfully clink them with, a cover version was born. Thinking it “too tricky to work out the chords to a Shiina Ringo song,” it was with a cover of Kyu Sakamoto’s “Sukiyaki” that ...

Nov 4, 2011

Strengthening ties with Brazil via film

Brazilian films enchant in a way Hollywood or other Asian movies cannot, according to the organizers of this year’s Festival Cinema Brazil. Into its seventh-annual installment, the festival has comedy, documentary and drama, aiming to showcase the unique culture of the country, and to ...

Artists who'll go bump in the night

Oct 27, 2011

Artists who'll go bump in the night

If you catch sight of The Invisible Salaryman, or rather his bandages, dark glasses and business suit, as he loops Tokyo by rail on the Yamanote Line this coming Sunday, you may want to follow him to the “abandoned” hospital hosting the latest ArtGig ...