July/Aug trip day 2
I hibernated in my hotel room until... yikes.. 4pm.Then I spent some time writing the previous blog post. Before I knew it, it was 6pm and time for me to boot it to Minami Ikebukuro Music Org. The show started at 6:30 pm (goddamn that's early!) Since it was my first time going to this relatively new live house it took me some time to find the damn place. And since my luck has a predilection towards Murphy's Law, SOLID AFRO, the band I came to see were the first band up and I missed the first half of their set. LUCKILY, I got to still got to see them play my fave songs: DONUTS and ORIORIORI-YO!!!
Here's a short clip I took of them playing ORIORIORI-YO!!!
I apologize for the darkness of the footage. The following clip is better (slightly)
They were pretty f*cking GREAT. Not mindblowing but I really enjoyed what I saw of their set. They're fairly tight and cohesive but at the same time a little raw and sloppy. The vocals are "we can't really sing and we don't give a f*ck" but the occasional dual male-female vocals add variety and charm. They have such an interesting sound. I wouldn't say it's incredibly novel but at the same time I struggle to name a band that comes close in tone and vibe to the end result of the various styles they've managed to amalgamate together. They're your average garage band with token female bass player meets poor man versions of Beck, toe and Nujabes combining synergistically to form something unrefined but uniquely fresh.
I chatted with Yusuke (Gt/Vo) and apparently he lived in Mexico for 4.5 years since his dad got relocated their for work when he was young. He speaks a handful of English but is rather fluent in Spanish and obviously Japanese. He plays in a side project called アンダーボーイズ!!! which is a little bit like Solid Afro but folkier with acoustic guitars. I threw the idea of Solid Afro coming to Canada someday but he said it'll be tough to get enough time off work especially for him +/- the other members.
I bought their CD and the songs sound even better with clean, crisp production. The opening track "Punks" is also now a favorite. Definitely check out Solid Afro if they're playing in Tokyo and you happen to be in town.
WTF?! I think they bought out an entire Yodobashi Camera store before coming to the show.
These guys played one long ~18 min mindf*ck of a song. It was cool to see once but I wouldn't go out of my way to see them perform again.
Next up was トンチ (tonchii) She plays a steel drum connected to a Kaoss pad which she controls with her right foot. She also sings (with quite a beautiful voice), does various bird/animal calls and plays with a small assortment of instruments/trinkets while playing her steel drum.
I didn't take any clips but here's footage from her website:
She was also very interesting but not quite my cup of shochu.
I didn't stick around for おにんこ! (Oninko!)
Their PV for the song "Fortune Night Club" is pretty hilarious but I had to meet up with my friends Kubota & Midori and Yukako (チーナ) to eat at とんちゃん. The kimchi チジミ filled with cheese! Nuff said.
Kubota and Midori