Tokyo Shout Outs
• Music that sounds “nice” is all well and good, but sometimes I’d much rather listen to the aural equivalent of being punched in the teeth. Thank heavens for Earthdom, then, whose line-up is like a never-ending cavalcade of coruscating noise pollution. Choice gig this month is Brazilian hardcore punks Mukeka di Rato and Merda‘s show on Thursday 26th (just start your Golden Week early, nrrr?), with support from Vivisick, D.S.B, Fuck on the Beach and Slight Slappers. Incidentally, if either of the last two have t-shirts for sale, I’d be very interested in purchasing one. 18:30 start, ¥2200 door.
• Pop (art) quiz: what connects Junior Vasquez and Andy Warhol? Someone enlighten me, please, because I’m just not seeing it myself. Anyway, Mr Vasquez is heading the bill at ALL TOMORROW’S PARTIES the 20th anniversary of Andy Warhol’s death, at ageHa on Saturday 14th. Support from Robert Owens, DJ Nori, Tohru Takahashi and a fair few others. Should be a right royal knees-up – just don’t question the rather spurious logic underpinning it. 23:00 start, ¥3500 door.
• Star Pine’s Cafe is throwing what looks to be an interesting all-night bash on Friday 27th. Heading the bill is percussionist/genius Semba Kiyohiko, one of those venerable old geezers who never seem to tire of trying out new shit. He’s playing with Kamugaros this time, a name I spent forever Googling before realizing it was actually, er, his band. Fleshing out the bill are the mind-bogglingly brilliant Asa-Chang & Junray and a trio of drummer/genius Tatsuya Yoshida, guitarist Tsuneo Imahori and bassist Mitsuru Nasuno, who between them have played in some of the greatest J-underground bands of the past two decades. Jolly good! 21:00 start (tip: get there early-ish), ¥3800 adv, ¥4300 door.
• If the prospect of a night of Adventures in Minimal Electronic Sound gets you slathering in anticipation, you should probably think about going back on your medication. If I tell you that said night features Industrial legends Peter Christopherson (Throbbing Gristle, Coil) and Robert Görl (DAF) with Raster-Noton mainstay COH, the reaction becomes a bit more forgivable. Just a bit, mind you. Liquidroom on Monday 16th, 19:00 start, ¥6000 adv.
• Last month’s Test Tone was an absolute cracker – and, evidently flushed with success, they’re following it up with their most shamelessly populist night to date. Wait, no they’re not. Ready yourself for an audio-visual extravaganza of the loopiest kind, with noise scene mainstays Government Alpha, Zbigniew Karkowski and Tetsuo Furudate going up against the rather less abrasive Christophe Charles and S20. Hiraku Suzuki and Atsuko Nojiri will be supplying the eye candy. If you haven’t already got a beard, grow one. Super Deluxe on Tuesday 10th, 20:00 start, free entry (with drink order).
• If the weather’s good, Nagisa Music Festival should be a bit of a peach. Espousing the syntactically mangled philosophy of “Free Mind With Smile”, this twice-yearly bash always flings together a pretty good line-up, and the latest promises to be no exception. Saturday 7th has everyone from oh-so-adorable indie heroes clammbon to ambient techno veterans System 7, via J-underground supergroup Live Loves, tech-electro boffin Arne and the ubiquitous Takkyu Ishino. On Sunday 8th, meanwhile, they’ve got none other than Detroit techno pioneer Derrick May headlining, plus megamix wunderkind DJ Kensei, dancefloor-friendly taiko act Gocoo, jam bands Sun Paulo and Shag (great name, that), and a whole load of psychedelic trance that I wouldn’t touch with a bargepole. Seriously, if you can’t find something here that you like, you probably just don’t like music. 13:00-20:00 Saturday, 9:00-20:00 Sunday, tickets for each day ¥3000 adv, ¥4000 door.
• Tujiko Noriko‘s bio on the Mego label website contains a wonderfully matter-of-fact account of her first attempt at live performance. Apparently, “due to problems (unconscious due to getting so drunk just past midnight), it ended in failure.” And that’s the official version. Anyhoo, the continent-hopping queen of laptop avant pop is stopping by at Heavy Sick ZERO in Nakano on Friday 27th, with sometime collaborator Riow Arai and the Jamie Lidell-esque miQue tagging along for the ride. Plush. 23:00 start, ¥2000 w/flyer (1d), ¥2500 door (1d).
• Dunno about you, but for me, last New Year’s Eve was the best one ever. Why? Because I spent it having my synapses fried by the mighty V∞redoms. Yamantaka Eye’s dready drum tribalists are one of the most essential live acts around, period. That they’ll be sharing a bill at Studio Coast on Friday 20th with none other than NYC noise rock titans Sonic Youth is but the cherry on top of an already lavishly iced cake. If you only go to one gig this month, make it this one. 19:00 start, ¥6800 adv.