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Alabama Shakes take a risk that pays off in 'Sound & Color'

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With their blended appearance and a sound steeped in soul yet born of the millennial rock scene, Alabama Shakes could symbolize a post-racial dream that, as the recent U.S. election shows, remains a work in progress. As with the civil rights movement, the band’s approach, says formidable singer-songwriter Brittany Howard, ...

Capeson mixes R&B with U.K. indie on 'Hiraeth'

| Nov 27, 2016

Capeson mixes R&B with U.K. indie on 'Hiraeth'

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Capeson “Hiraeth” (Tokyo Recordings) Fledging label Tokyo Recordings gained significant buzz after its founder, Nariaki Obukuro (N.O.R.K.), collaborated with Hikaru Utada on her comeback album, “Fantome.” Weeks later, the label released “Hiraeth”, the debut album by singer-songwriter Capeson, who was born in Tokyo but ...

Review: Cheap Trick at Shinkiba Studio Coast

Nov 22, 2016

Review: Cheap Trick at Shinkiba Studio Coast

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The house lights dimmed to the rumbling introduction of Cheap Trick’s “Stop This Game,” while founding bassist Tom Petersson and new drummer Daxx Nielsen mounted the stage; the former clad in charcoal tones, while the latter sported a black T-shirt. Then, as vocalist Robin ...

Toyomu imagines life after Kanye

Nov 20, 2016

Toyomu imagines life after Kanye

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American rapper Kanye West’s seventh album, “The Life Of Pablo,” felt inescapable when it emerged this past February. But that wasn’t the case in Japan. Streaming music service Tidal — which initially had exclusive rights to “Pablo” — isn’t available here. This gave Toyomu ...

Ogre You Asshole flirts with tension on latest album

Nov 20, 2016

Ogre You Asshole flirts with tension on latest album

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The members of Ogre You Asshole are bracing for something. At least, that’s what the title of their seventh album, “Handoru o Hanasu Mae Ni” (“Before Letting Go of the Handle”) suggests. (The album’s official English title is the less tense “Everythingsomethingnothing.”) “It’s not ...

The hushed ambience of Ex Confusion

Nov 20, 2016

The hushed ambience of Ex Confusion

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As the summer of 2014 came to a close, Atsuhito Omori found himself in a good position. The Nara-based artist who records ambient music as Ex Confusion had released an album titled “Flow” through buzzed-about New York label Orchid Tapes. Artistically, however, things weren’t ...

Orchestra from Jerusalem to tour Japan

| Nov 16, 2016

Orchestra from Jerusalem to tour Japan

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Classical music fans in Japan are set for a treat when the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra conducts its first tour of this country from Nov. 19 through Dec. 4. Throughout its 80-year history as a leading orchestra, the JSO has played a crucial role in ...