/ May 10, 2012


by Shawn Despres

Tokyo-based duo group_inou are one of those acts that seems like a perfect fit for the Fuji Rock Festival, which is held annually in Naeba, Niigata Prefecture. This summer will mark the band's third time at the event. The act first showcased its hip-hop/electronica hybrid ...

Lenny Kravitz

/ Mar 29, 2012

Lenny Kravitz

by Mads Berthelsen

When Barack Obama campaigned for the presidency of the United States in 2008, the topic of race often came up in discussions about him. Obama was born to a black father and a white mother, and questions such as "Is America ready for a ...

Moja 'Super Ultra Gold 79'

/ Mar 8, 2012

Moja "Super Ultra Gold 79"

by Shawn Despres

Since its 2006 formation, Tokyo two-piece Moja has strived to make its mark globally by showcasing a bass-and-drums-driven brand of rock 'n' roll at music festivals and club gigs in the United States, Canada, England, Italy and Hong Kong. The band's 2009 eponymous debut ...

Your Gold, My Pink 'Teenage Riot

/ Mar 1, 2012

Your Gold, My Pink "Teenage Riot

by Patrick ST. Michel

Your Gold, My Pink's decision to name its debut full-length album "Teenage Riot" shows some serious guts from the young quartet. It's a title that has certain connotations, that either the band embraces the adolescent rebellion of punk — or just really likes Sonic ...

TsuShiMaMiRe 'Shocking'

/ Feb 16, 2012

TsuShiMaMiRe "Shocking"

by Shawn Despres

Now a dozen years into their career, female rockers TsuShiMaMiRe have established a considerable international cult following. Since 2004, the Tokyo trio have completed several American tours, playing in excess of 150 gigs there. One of their higher profile stateside stints was a string ...

Tokyo Jihen 'Color Bars'

/ Feb 2, 2012

Tokyo Jihen "Color Bars"

by Patrick ST. Michel

Tokyo Jihen's first five albums have titles relating to types of television programming, "Sports" or "Variety" or "Adult." The Shiina-Ringo-led group's sixth album, though, is titled "Color Bars," after the rainbow lines that grace the TV screen during technical difficulties or dead-air time. It's ...

Ethnic Minority 'Startin' ”

/ Jan 26, 2012

Ethnic Minority "Startin' ”

by Sean Smith

If you've been near Shibuya Station in Tokyo at night in the past 12 months, you may well have encountered three young guys playing up a storm to passers-by, many of whom have stopped to listen, cheer and/or dance. This trio goes by the ...

Tenniscoats 'Papa's Ear'

/ Jan 5, 2012

Tenniscoats "Papa's Ear"

by Shawn Despres

Tokyo's Tenniscoats have certainly kept busy over the last nine months. In April, the indie-pop duo of multi-instrumentalists Takashi Ueno and Saya (who goes by only her first name) released their "Tokinouta" disc and in October they issued "Enjoy Your Life," a collaborative effort ...