Samuel Cockedey has produced a number of absolutely breathtaking time-lapse videos of Tokyo and other places in Japan. Android Dreams, which was published last year, sets evening and nighttime shots of central Tokyo against the soundtrack to Blade Runner. The end result is fantastic.
Posts Tagged ‘electronica’
Fact is a Tokyo-area band described as “post-hardcore” that has been recording since the late 1990s. In addition to their hard-driving sound, blending sung and screamed lyrics (typically on the subjects of alienation and lost love), all backed by intense drum rhythms, Fact is also notable for doing nearly all of their lyrics in English.
This version of Rise is a remix by electronic and house musician Steve Aoki of one of the tracks from Fact’s self-titled 2009 album. The Noh masks are a recurring theme through many of the group’s other videos, and are frequently used by the band members to hide their faces in their videos.
This song could almost be called a Steve Aoki piece featuring Fact, as the only link between this version and the original is the single repeated lyric that appears in both. The Fact version below is extremely different, though also quite good, and is more representative of the band’s style.
To promote the new iPhone / iPad app Fresh Push Play, breakbeat duo Hifana spend a day wandering around Tokyo searching for sounds to record, then turning it into a performance aboard a nighttime party boat in Tokyo Harbor.
Hifana is (as best as I can tell) a Tokyo-based hip-hop duo consisting of DJs KeizoMachine (Keizo Fukuda) and Juicy (Jun Miyata). They released their first album as a duo in 2000, after doing extensive collaboration work with Yamatsuka Eye (the front man for The Boredoms, and the subject of my last entry). They have since released a sizable body of work both on their own and partnered with other artists, in which they frequently combine classical and folk instruments with sampled effects.
In this piece, titled Wamono (released on their Channel H album in 2005) they incorporate Okinawan folk instruments with some cool beats to create a high energy sound, paired here with a video about a pair of fishermen venturing out into a typhoon.
I just recently found this video of Ei Wada, of Braun Tube Jazz Band, from a 2010 performance at the Ars Electronica Festival in Linz. Using old CRT-style TVs, he creates an audio-visual feedback loop that he can play like a giant synthesizer by running his hands across the screens. Toward the end, he brings up a member of the audience to place his hand on one of the screens, and then begins ‘playing’ him.
and a more melodic piece performed in Zurich in 2011:
I recently came across this wonderfully creepy video for “Come on My Selector” by UK-based electronic artist Squarepusher. Directed by Chris Cunnigham, it takes place in the “Osaka Home for Mentally Disturbed Children” and features a little girl making her escape with advice from her dog.
I realize my ‘discovery’ is way behind the times, as the video came out over ten years ago. Still, I thought it was interesting.
While the Japanese voice-overs seem accurate for the most part, it’s pretty obvious that the actors are all speaking English. But what really happened to catch my attention is the similarity with the currently popular Fuji TV series, “Marumo no Okite”. The show is about a company worker trying to take care of two orphaned children, and along the way he ends up with a dog (similar to the one on the video) that periodically talks to him, though he never seems sure if it’s not just a stress-induced hallucination.
Obviously, the dogs and shows are very different, but finding this video right when another work using the ‘dog talks to mentally fragile people’-concept is the rage just struck me as amusing.
The main characters (including the talking dog) are all in the first 30 seconds, but feel free to watch the whole episode. The rest of the series (this is episode 5) so far has been uploaded to Youtube.