MP3/VIDEO: Six Japanese Songs That I Am Into Lately

Posted on March 10, 2012 by Skittle.
Filed Under Downloads, MP3, Videos | 1 Comment
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One year ago one of the coolest places on the planet was struck by a devastating earthquake and an even worse tsunami. In the months since then the country of Japan has been pulling itself back together and looking toward the future. I posted about the tragedy with a Gackt mp3 after it happened, including a breathtaking photo of the tsunami breaching a wall on the coast of Miyako City. This is the same location today.

Miyako City a year later

This anniversary seems as good of a time as any to bring back the popular “Six Songs” post on You Sound Like A Robot. I like to make these posts special, themed at times. This time I am featuring an all Japanese selection of music. Lately I have been watching a couple of great music shows known as J Melo and Alterna JPN on a Japanese channel that is broadcast across the internet known as NHK World. This has been amazing for discovering new musicians from the Land of the Rising Sun.


Peelander-Z, “How Are USA”

I include Peelander-Z in this post under the pretense that they are Japanese, however I believe they actually come from the Z area of planet Peelander. They just happened to land in Japan and now are based out of New York. I have had the chance to meet the crew before at Dragon*Con and I must say they are pretty cool and approachable to be aliens. Although I got to meet them, I missed their show that weekend. They have swung by a couple times since then but there is always something in the way that keeps me from attending! Peelander-Z has become one of the bands that I am destined to catch live, but it just hasn’t happened yet. One day!

I did purchase a live DVD from them called Peelander is FUN! so I have delved into the madness that is their live set. I really need to see their performance one day! I also purchased a shirt and poster (which they signed with Earth markers) from them. I picked this song from their 2010 CD P-TV-Z. It is called “How Are USA” and is an ode of sorts to the United States and all of the states housed within.

Peelander-Z - P-TV-Z
Download “How Are USA” now! (Right-click, save as)

Yellow Fried Chickenz, “またここであいましょう (Mata kokode aimashou)”

If I credited one person with being responsible for introducing me to Japan and the great music that comes from there, it would be Gackt. He has been a big name in the local music industry, and worldwide, for many years since he was part of the visual kei band Malice Mizer in the mid to late 1990′s. He has been doing solo music for over ten years now. His newest project seems to be the supergroup Yellow Fried Chickenz created to bring more “manly men” to the J-pop and J-rock scene. They put together this song and video in rememberence of all those affected by the Great Earthquake and Tsunami of 3-11. It really is something special, watch the video below.

Oh, and I have heard that Yellow Fried Chickenz is planning a US Tour! If they tour here like they do in European tours they may actually be hitting a decent amount of cities. Let’s hope they don’t play NY, LA, and fly home like many Japanese acts are guilty of. I would freaking love to see them. I never thought that I would have possibly gotten the opportunity until now. We will see.

Direct link to the video


Oreskaband, “ピノキオ (Pinocchio)”

Oreskaband is a Japanese act that I actually have seen live before! I caught them on Warped Tour 2008. I had not heard of them until then, I just happened to catch their set and instantly became a fan. It was a blast. They have released one self titled disc here in the states, which I grabbed from the girls after the show. There are a few more available from Japan as well. This song, “Pinocchio”, is actually an older track of theirs from their commercial debut disc in 2006. Give it a listen.

Oreskaband - OreSkaBand
Download “Pinocchio” now! (Right-click, save as)

Sonodaband, “/ ソノダバンド (Soul River)”

Sonodaband is one that I discovered from watching J Melo on NHK World online. They are a six piece, all about the same age as me. They are an instrumental group, letting the violin do the singing throughout their music. It’s pretty cool to know that no matter what country you are from, music will always be a common language. I read that these guys actually were a part of SXSW last year. That makes me want to go to that even more, too bad it’s a bit far from here. Watch the video for “Soul River” from 2010 below.

Direct link to the video


Miyavi, “Jpn Pride”

Miyavi is an extraordinary guitarist. He was a part of a visual kei band called Dué le Quartz briefly but has since launched a very successful solo career. I caught a few songs being performed live on another Japanese music show on NHK World called Alterna JPN. Watch a video from that Alterna JPN 2011 episode here.

Direct link to the video

He has received attention all over the world for his Samurai like guitar playing. He combines multiple genres into a heavy controlled chaos of guitar and drums. One thing that makes Miyavi stick out is that he uses a slap and pop method in his playing, similar to what you would see from a jazz band’s bassist. Or Les Claypool. The difference is he does it on an electric guitar. Definitely worth a listen. I included the opening track from his 2008 album This Iz the Japanese Kabuki Rock. It is titled “Jpn Pride”, which seems fitting for this post.

Miyavi - This Iz The Japanese Kabuki Rock
Download “Jpn Pride” now! (Right-click, save as)

Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, “つけまつける (Tsukematsukeru)”

Kyary Pamyu Pamyu is relatively new on the scene. She is a fashion blogger turned business owner and musician. She released a trippy video for a song called “PONPONPON” last year and the internet loved it. I was going to post that song because it really is worth the watch but she has since released a newer video earlier this year. It is for a song called “Tsukematsukeru”. The new clip is a pretty trippy experience too and, hey, it’s got two lions in it! Lions are pretty intimidating, right? Don’t worry. It’s just a music video.

Direct link to the video

Domo arigato.

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One Response to “MP3/VIDEO: Six Japanese Songs That I Am Into Lately”

  1. Susie on March 12th, 2012 1:23 pm

    I think I may have enjoyed these songs too much. :p Thanks Skittle

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