International pop star Namie Amuro has been pretty active in the past couple years, from her most recent studio album _genic to hit singles like Red Carpet, Fighter, and the 2016 Summer Olympics theme song Hero. Today, Amuro's 40th birthday, the singer announced that she would be retiring from her music career in September of 2018.
San Japan, taking place this Labor Day weekend in San Antonio, TX, have brought on Japanese fashion brand, LISTEN FLAVOR and Japanese DJ and producer, TeddyLoid to their roster.
PIKOTARO, the man behind the popular YouTube video Pen Pineapple Apple Pen (PPAP), will be celebrating his 1st anniversary with a special livestream event on YouTube!
After a whole year since the release of PPAP, PIKOTARO will celebrate the 1st Anniversary of the song with a YouTube Livestream event that will include a music live, talk show, new single, and special guests.
The livestream is titled ~YouTube Music Night - PPAP 1st Anniversary~ and will take place on PIKOTARO’s YouTube channel. Here is the times, dates, and YouTube links for Japan and countries around the world:
8/25 (FRI) 20:00 - JST (Japan)
* 4:00 - PST (US)
* 7:00 - EST (US)
* 12:00 - GMT (UK)
* 13:00 - CET (Europe)
Japanese URL： https://youtu.be/ fLL1ooASvG0
English interpreted URL： https://youtu.be/2JZd4- SINJI
Released in 2016, PPAP has become a worldwide hit with over 120 million views with 110,000 related videos to total over 1.5 billion views. PPAP is considered to be “one of the most worldwide famous tracks by a Japanese artist!”
PIKOTARO, also known as Daimaou Kousaka, is the japanese comedian behind the infamous song. He has been on the Bollboard Chat and Guiness World Records and performed for prestigious events like Kohaku Utagassen, Bokudan Showcase, and Summer Sonic.
PIKOTARO Official YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channe l/UCKpIOnsk-gcwHXIzuk24ExA
TeddyLoid and DAOKO will make their first, rare overseas duo appearance together at Anime Weekend Atlanta in Atlanta, GA!
Mio Yamazaki has been around since as early as 2013, but it's just recently that their name has started coming up in different circles online. Let's back up a little. Mio Yamazaki is a band formed by the vocalist of the same name (presumably - we only know that she goes by the given name Mio). Their breakout single Noise was released only this year, as the opening theme to the fourth season of Jigoku Shoujo/Hell Girl. The band combines distorted alternative rock with electro-pop elements to great effect, reminiscent of underground heroes URBANGARDE.
We recently had the pleasure of interviewing award-winning jazz pianist, Ai Kuwabara during her two-date tour of the US. We caught up to her at her show at The Blue Whale Bar in Little Tokyo Los Angeles and in between her crowd-rousing sets we discussed her recent album and her work musicians Steve Gadd (Eric Clapton, B.B. King, etc) and Will Lee (The CBS Orchestra, etc.). Be sure to check it out and keep an eye out for more awesome music from her in the future!
Ai Kuwabara is an award-winning jazz musician who released her first album "from here to there" in 2012 with the group ai kuwabara trio project. The following year she released her second album titled "THE SIXTH SENSE" and performed some concerts in the US to support this. Named a "genius" by AERA magazine, she also won the Montreux Jazz Solo Piano Competition in Kawasaki Japan. She released two more albums as ai kuwabara trio project and followed this releases by partnering with legendary musicians Steve Gadd and Will Lee for her latest album "Somehow, Someday, Somewhere". Following these US dates she will tour with both Gadd and Lee in support of this album.
It's been 11 years since internationally-acclaimed musician Keigo Oyamada released an album under the name Cornelius. In that time he's worked on countless collaborative projects with musicians all over the world, but Cornelius would always be there waiting for his triumphant return to the spotlight. Enter: Mellow Waves.
Note: this is a compilation album made up of re-recordings of older songs by the band for their 10th anniversary. At the time of writing, the reviewer was unaware of this fact.
In probably the most closed-minded decision I've ever made, I passed up on this album when it came out about a month ago because the cover made me (falsely) assume this was gonna be yet another alt-idol group riding the coattails of the already heavily-saturated alt-idol scene. Oh boy, was I wrong. (Also the cover's pretty cool, whoops)
We recently had the pleasure of sitting down with Aural Vampire at Anime Matsuri XI in Houston, Texas where they were both performing and headlining that year's rave! Being no strangers to performances in the US, there was a lot to talk about such as the formation of the group, their distinct musical sound, their unique (and creepy) songwriting process, and several funny stories that occurred during lives!
Aural Vampire is an electronica/darkwave group (sometimes duo) made up of vocalist EXO-CHIKA and DJ RAVEMAN. They released their debut album, "Vampire Ecstasy", in 2004 which featured the popular song "Freeeeze". This was followed up by "ZOLTANK" which featured other popular songs like "Hot Blood Workout" and "Darkwave Surfer". They made their US debut at Anime Matsuri in 2008 and have performed overseas many times since including a well-received tour with The Birthday Massacre. In 2012 they released the single "Soloween" which featured a full band for the first time. This band can be seen on their more recent releases "Razors on Backstreet" and their cover EP "Mimic Your Hairstyle". Along with several collaborations, such as one with visual kei band BLOOD, they recently provided a song for the video game "Let It Die".
In 2014, legendary experimental rock/metal band Boris dropped their LP Noise, which received relatively mixed reviews from most critics. Their second major label album was seen as a bit too clean, lacking in the punch and passion of previous Boris releases. It wasn't quite the hollow indie pop of Attention Please, but it was nowhere near the triumphant doom and sludge metal of Pink. Noise felt overall like a weird amalgamation of Boris' greatest strengths and weaknesses; we got the powerful Heavy Rain right before the critically panned pop song Taiyo no Baka (a song which I admittedly like very much, but one that doesn't fit into the Boris milieu). After Noise, Boris spent their time touring and releasing collaborative efforts with Endon (the New Noise Literacy trio of urban dance, warpath, and asia), a conclusion to their experimental series The Thing Which Solomon Overlooked, and another collaboration with famed noise artist Merzbow (Gensho). Now in 2017, Boris returns to their sludge roots with Dear, an album which almost marked the band's retirement.