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Patrick St. Michel
Patrick St. Michel is a Tokyo-based writer with a focus on Japanese music. He runs the blog Make Believe Melodies, which has focused on Japanese independent music since 2009. Besides The Japan Times, he also contributes to MTV 81 and The Atlantic.
For Patrick St. Michel's latest contributions to The Japan Times, see below:
Japan Times
CULTURE / Music
Apr 1, 2022
Fuji Rock 2022 lineup sees return of overseas acts
The premier summer festival will feature non-Japanese acts, including American artists Jack White and Halsey as headliners, signaling a return to form after going completely local last year.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Music
Mar 24, 2022
Eve's hourlong music video sums up J-pop in 2022
Billed as a 'live in animation,' 'Adam by Eve' reflects a trend among young artists using animation filled with references and in-jokes to enhance their music.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Music
Mar 4, 2022
The Eurobeat boom, boom, boom, boom means the '90s are back
Dust off your best para para dance moves, the sound of hi-NRG Heisei has returned.
Japan Times
LIFE / Digital / Japan Pulse
Feb 26, 2022
Pioneering virtual YouTuber Kizuna AI goes on 'indefinite hiatus'
Over five years, the digital character delivered a new kind of content geared toward digital natives. Now she's saying farewell with one last, livestreamed concert.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Music
Feb 21, 2022
Sky-Hi: Taking up the fight for artistic freedom
The artist-turned-talent agency CEO says Japanu2019s music industry needs a major modern makeover.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Music
Feb 11, 2022
Ado brings a flair for the dramatic to ‘Kyogen’
The rebellious teenage J-pop singer brings the sonic palette of the Japanese Vocaloid community to the mainstream and shows off her vocal versatility on her debut album, u201cKyogen.u201d
Japan Times
CULTURE / Music
Feb 11, 2022
The Tokyo club scene's 'temple' may be gone, but the faith remains
As the COVID-19 pandemic drags on, the artists in Tokyo's club scene are turning to downsizing as a way to survive.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Music
Jan 29, 2022
‘Bad Mode’ delivers some of the best songs of Hikaru Utada’s career
Hikaru Utadau2019s eighth full-length album is full of introspection, with the artist working on their personal growth and coming away with a better sense of self.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Music
Jan 14, 2022
What can we expect from J-pop in 2022?
Ditch the downer sounds of 2021 for brighter bops, Shibuya-kei and breakout hits via TikTok.
Japan Times
CULTURE / TV & Streaming
Jan 8, 2022
‘Aggretsuko’ digs into toxic work culture and self-worth
The newly released fourth season of "Aggretsuko" digs into some truly bleak storylines about the realities of work, but still finds a way to humanize even its most unlikeable characters.
Japan Times
CULTURE / TV & Streaming
Dec 30, 2021
New Year's TV sees us spoiled for choice
Japanese broadcast televisionu2019s slate of new year programming features star-studded blowouts that offer the perfect dose of moderately entertaining content as we head into 2022.
Japan Times
CULTURE / TV & Streaming
Dec 25, 2021
Fairy tale fantasies meet reality on ‘The Future Diary’ and ‘The Bachelor Japan’
Whether you're in the mood for a love story with a melodramatic touch or some messier romantic competition, streaming services have you covered.
Japan Times
CULTURE / TV & Streaming
Dec 25, 2021
Johnny's pop stars get pumped for 'Sasuke'
Members from Snow Man, A.B.C-Z, 7 Men Samurai and Shonen Ninja take on the ultimate physical challenge.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Music
Dec 24, 2021
Escapist bops and deep pop: Music was a mood in 2021
After a year in which Japan's music industry had to make its peace with streaming, this year saw more of the holdouts get on board with the times.
Japan Times
JAPAN / Media / Japan Pulse
Dec 19, 2021
YouTuber gets hit with copyright claims, but is it Toei who’s out of line?
While companies have a right to protect their intellectual property, they should still realize the media landscape is changing.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Music
Dec 3, 2021
JO1 to the world: A new stage for J-pop
The 11-member act signals the rise of reality TV talent competitions geared toward the social media age.
Japan Times
CULTURE / TV & Streaming / Wide Angle
Nov 27, 2021
Live-action 'Cowboy Bebop' shows the limitations of Netflix's originality
Netflix's adaptation of a beloved anime series has been met with groans, but the recent South Korean hit u201cSquid Gameu201d demonstrates how anime can in fact be brought to life successfully.
Japan Times
CULTURE / TV & Streaming
Nov 19, 2021
Yoasobi, NiziU, BiSH and KAT-TUN to sing in the new year on 'Kohaku Uta Gassen'
According to NHKu2019s official site, this yearu2019s theme is u201cColorfulu201d to represent the programu2019s mission to bring u201ccoloru201d to the lives of people during COVID-19 and highlight Japanu2019s diversity.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Music
Nov 19, 2021
Kyary Pamyu Pamyu: The reluctant icon?
For the better part of a 10-year career, the performer's aesthetic defined Japan's pop culture. Her latest album, u201cCandy Racer,u201d marks a fresh start.
Japan Times
CULTURE / Music
Nov 5, 2021
Kiyotaka Sugiyama looks back on the glistening days of city pop
The Omega Tribe frontman celebrates the 40th anniversary of the city pop group's debut with remastered versions of past albums.

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