NMFT 7 in June or July.
The reason why I've always held NMFT in May or October is because it's still relatively warm in Canada and airfare is at its cheapest.HOWEVER, since the price of oil is currently low it's actually quite affordable to fly between Canada and Japan in June and July as well (prices shoot up again in August).
NMFT7 was originally set for May 15 - 20 but the band otori wouldn't be able to make these dates sooooo... I'm going to try and organize something ASAP for either June or July, 2015.
The three bands I am bringing for sure are:
1. otori homepage A band that plays No-wave/krautrock/hardcore/noise with a fiercely original delivery. And they have unequivocally the coolest (i.e. most badass) female vocalist in all of Japan since ミドリ (Mariko Goto) and Tokyo Jihen (Shiina Ringo) disbanded. I always thought otori might be too weird/noisy for a lot of NMFT fans but you guys showed plenty of love for otori on twitter and Facebook. You guys make me proud because otori are f*cking awesome and they deserve to showcase their highly original brand of no-wave and noise to Canadians who appreciate creative music of the highest quality.
2. mothercoat homepage They were one of the original gangsters from NMFT vol 1 and were huge favourites for a lot of you back then. Well, they're EVEN BETTER now. They're mathier, more technical, waaaaay quirkier and still play with a mammoth amount of energy on stage. One of the most amazing bands you will ever see.
3. Ame no Parade Their live show is way more powerful, soulful and impressive than how they sound on CD or Youtube. I first saw them perform in Fukuoka last July and was blown away. I wanted to watch them again in October but the Minami Wheel festival they were playing at got cancelled due to a typhoon. During my two week stay in Tokyo in December they had already finished their shows for the year. It sucks that I never got a chance to reaffirm how good Ame no Parade are live but they made a lasting first impression. At the very least I guarantee watching their beautiful and sh*t hot drummer Mineho Osawa will have you mesmerized.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- In addition to the bands above I am considering bringing either Owarikara or Gekitetsu.
OWARIKARA were arguably the most popular band during NMFT vol 1, or at least tied with mothercoat. In terms of promoting NMFT7 with OWARIKARA on board I could use the angle of having the tour be a new and improved version of the original tour (where otori and Ame no Parade replace Kulu Kulu Garden, goomi and andymori). OWARIKARA's music has much more diversity, depth, and emotion compared to Gekitetsu. OWARIKARA are also much better musicians and surprisingly have MORE ENERGY AND STAGE PRESENCE than Gekitetsu. Bullsh*t you say? Those who remember OWARIKARA from NMFT vol 1 know the deal. Just watch the video above right to the end and realize that OWARIKARA often go a lot crazier than that.
Gekitetsu's music is one-dimensional with very little variety between songs. But the one style they have they do quite well. Their music and live show hits HARD and is much more danceable and mosh-inducing compared to OWARIKARA. I would say OWARIKARA wins hands down in terms of quality of musicianship, songwriting and overall stage-presence but Gekitetsu may have the edge in terms of pure entertainment. In other words, you'll be more in awe of OWARIKARA's performance but you might have more fun going nuts to Gekitetsu's music.
_______________________________________________________________________ Other bands under consideration:
Akasick homepage If you like soutaiseiriron or パスピエ then you'll probably like Akasick. Like both these bands Akasick have a phenomenal rhythm section. The bassist is especially sick. And the guitarist is no slouch either. Compared to soutaiseriron and passpied, Akasick definitely rock out more. My friend Edwin feels I should have at least one band that's a bit more accessible and fun like Akasick or Atlantis Airport.
Just to let you guys know, tricot turned down NMFT7... again (they're still bitter about NMFT4). Each tour I've tried to get a 'headliner' type band (e.g. andymori, Mass of the Fermenting Dregs, NATSUMEN, ZAZEN BOYS, Mouse on the Keys etc) but past experience tells me that Canadians don't give a f*ck and the least known bands often steal the show from the bigger name bands. So this time there is no sexy headliner but the line-up will kick more ass than ever.
Having said that, there are two bands that are a bit of a long shot but I'm in the process of inviting them nonetheless.
Firstly, ゲスの極み乙女。 When I saw Gesu no Kiwami Otome perform at Tsukuba Rock Fes over two years ago they were nowhere near a household name. Now they're one of the biggest bands in Japan in terms of popularity. Their music is almost too mainstream for NMFT but this band is ridiculously talented and their roots are in the indie/underground scene. I bumped into the members of Gesu (minus singer Enon) at Shimokitazawa ERA and at Countdown Japan and talked to them about Next Music and the Canada Tour. Hona, the drummer is friends with Happy!Mari and Kinoko Teikoku so she knew about the tour already. Gesu has gotten HUGE and it would probably cost a ton of guaranteed money in addition to paying for their travel/hotel etc. Also they already have shows booked into early May and the individual members play in separate bands that are active as well. So the chances they're free to play in May or June long enough for the Canada tour are pretty slim.
But if Gesu no Kiwami Otome say no, then I can try inviting Hona's band: Microcosm homepage
They would be a potential 5th band in addition to e.g. Gekitetsu, Akasic or OWARIKARA. That is assuming Hona isn't busy with Gesu no Kiwami at the time.
Secondly, 大森靖子 (Oomori Seiko) The most impressive live performance I saw in my trip to Tokyo in December was that of Oomori Seiko with her band THEピンクトカレフ. I had seen Oomori Seiko perform 3-4 years ago solo with an acoustic guitar. She reminded me of Goto Mariko and her solo act was really animated and passionate but I didn't think it suited a Canadian audience since understanding the lyrics play a huge role in appreciating her music. So many people told me I needed to check out Oomori Seiko's live show and consider bringing her to Canada and I would say that I had already seen her show a few years back. Anyhow, her live show is completely different now and when she performs with her band The Pink to Karefu, sh*t gets CRAAAAAAAAAAAZY. The audience goes bananas moshing as she sings while crowd surfing with her dress almost coming apart. Her music is like folk meets IDOL meets post-punk and she is about the most charismatic singer you will come across. Her band is about the closest thing to watching ミドリ play live even thought the music itself is worlds apart in terms of style. The only problem is Oomori Seiko is getting to be insanely popular as well. Not on the level of AKB48, Momoiro Clover or Dempa Gumi Inc but she has a fan base that is growing rapidly and exponentially. Chances are almost as slim as Gesu No Kiwami Otome but I'll give it a try since her performance would give the line-up an interesting twist.
This video is from one year ago, the audience at her shows now go completely apesh*t.
otori, Ame no Parade and mother coat are set in stone. But I can bring one more... maybe two more bands. It would help a lot if you answered the following in the comments section:
Between PENs+, OWARIKARA, Gekitetsu, Akasick, Atlantis Airport and Microcosm: which 2 bands would you want to see most?