Blog - April 2012 Archives
April 2012 Archives
.28 Weekly revue: 2012 week #17 (April 21 to 27)
.21 Weekly revue: 2012 week #16 (April 14 to 20)
.14 Weekly revue: 2012 week #15 (April 7 to 13)
.08 Weekly revue: 2012 week #14 (March 31 to April 6)
.01 Weekly revue: 2012 week #13 (March 24 to 30)
April 28, 2012
Weekly revue: 2012 week #17 (April 21 to 27)
Food: - Lunch set at Kichimu in Kichijoji. The place is owned by clammbon's Harada Ikuko and her sister. Sunday Bake Shop was also holding a temporary stall there and we enjoyed some Eton Mess and Banoffi Pie.
- Met Thai friend Oak and we went to have some great soba at Kawakamian in Minami-Aoyama!
Stuff: - While eating desserts someone dropped by to recommend a "fève" exhibition at a nearby shop. I had heard of the event a while ago but had forgotten about it. We went and I found this unexpected synthesizer fève! There were a lot of other cute ones and also accessories made using fèves.
(Fèves (meaning "beans") are made to be used in "galette des rois", a pie eaten on Epiphany Eve. The person who finds the fève is the king of the day.)
- New shoes: Mario Bros. One Star Converse! Japan-exclusive.
Music release news: Towa Tei, Meg, 80kidz, "Girly Graffiti" (French-pop and Beatles cover compilations)
Playlist: Justice, Denki Groove, Vanilla Beans, Pizzicato Five, Perfume, ...
April 21, 2012
Weekly revue: 2012 week #16 (April 14 to 20)
Food: Cute lamb cookies and more from Sunday Bake Shop!
Music event: - Went to UFO Club (Higashi-Koenji) for the first time..! I should have been a long time ago. A friend's band called Saitō Neon Sign was playing in a GS-themed event titled "Young Beat vol.3" which was a lot of fun! 3-piece girls band The Lingeries was great, reminding me of Shonen Knife but doing 60's covers. Another band called DECO D'ECO featured singer Miel-chan, who you might get to meet at Tokyo Sky Tree where she's going to work. Good CKB-style sound!
Saito Neon Sign, The Lingeries, DECO D'ECO. More photos at Flickr.
New music: - I've been enjoying Denki Groove's new single "Shameful"! The video can be seen below. There's talk of a new album for this year and I'm really looking forward to that!
- mishmash* is the new unit of long-time Cornelius programmer Mishima Toyoaki. The first song "Roll of Love" (Japanese version is "koi no tamashii") is cute and fun! It's even hitting the top of charts at Amazon Japan MP3. Check out the video below. I'll be looking out for more from them.
- Otherwise I've been quite excited about this live clip (below) of Tokyo Killer, the instrumental surf band of Kinoco Hotel's guitarist Keme, playing "Misirlou" (Pulp Fiction).
Gig report: Last week's "Tokyo eleport 006" event (The Aprils, Candles, Cutie Pai, ExceNtRip)
Music news: Charity comp. "Vanilla", Tokyo Killer, "The Girl from Ipanema" (electronica comp.), mishmash* Julie Watai, Denki Groove single, ...
Playlist: Sunahara Yoshinori, Sawagi, Denki Groove, Towa Tei, Misswonda, capsule, Kinoco Hotel, Fantastic Plastic Machine, EeL, ...
mishmash* Julie Watai "koi no tamashii"
Denki Groove "Shameful"
Tokyo Killer "Misirlou"
April 14, 2012
Weekly revue: 2012 week #15 (April 7 to 13)
Outing: Little trip to Mashiko in Tochigi prefecture. Some good bread, looking around galleries for local ceramic works, and had some good soba! We also bought an "agneau pascal", a lamb-shaped bread eaten on Easter in Alsace (France). Really anything can be found in Japan!
New music: Vanilla Beans' new single "Choco Mint Flavor Time"! I love the title song of course, but also the B-sides were very good surprises. "hitotsu no uta" has a cool new wave synth phrase in the intro and used through the song, it's also a nice positive song about the feeling of many people enjoying the same song at the same place and time. The other B-side, "1969nen no Drag Race", is a cover of Ohtaki Eiichi (album "Each Time" (1984)). This cover works really well, and there's something about cute girls making car sounds! Would love to hear it live, hopefully at their one-man show on June 17.
Music events: - On Tuesday was Vanilla Beans' release event at Tower Records Shibuya. They played a generous set of 8 songs, and I got to shake hands! :)
Set list: Afternoon-a-Go-Go / Nicola / Choco Mint Flavor Time / toki no kakera / Question / Yes No / Tokyo wa yoru no 7ji / hitotsu no uta
- And on Thursday was Candles' event "Tokyo eleport 006", also featuring The Aprils, Cutie Pai and ExceNtRip. Report coming hopefully soon, meanwhile my photos are up on Flickr!
Playlist: Aside having Vanilla Beans' new single on repeat, I listened to Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, Dorian, The Aprils, Plus-Tech Squeeze Box, Frenesi, Aira Mitsuki, Nakatsuka Takeshi, Kinbara Chieko
Music release news: Ram Rider and Recoride
Tech: I've been having fun making a script that takes a photo for input, and outputs kanji depending on the calculated pixel brightness. It's kind of like ASCII art except that you can't say it's ASCII because it contains multibyte characters, so I call it JIS art (referring to the Japanese character set). See the example below.
April 8, 2012
Weekly revue: 2012 week #14 (March 31 to April 6)
Food: Couscous lunch at Tamtam in Nishi-Ogikubo, and Moroccan sweets.
New music: - New single from Kyary Pamyu Pamyu! "Candy Candy" really has a catchy chorus. The B-side is also fun. As usual the limited edition photo book is quite nicely done! A first album was announced too so I'm looking forward to that!
Music release news: - Vanilla Beans new single "Choco Mint Flavor Time" coming this week! Can't wait! :)
Playlist: Necozawa Emi & Sphinx, Towa Tei, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu (new single too!), Twinklestars, Merpeoples, DadaD, "Crue-L Café", Sunahara Yoshinori, ...
Tech: - I had a bit too much fun with an idea for April Fool. I made a page which when shared on Facebook or Mixi it appears as a news ("Japan has delayed April Fool to April 2"), but when clicked the page just says "April Fool's!". I used Open Graph Protocol meta tags for the fake news, and made it in 3 languages: English, French and Japanese. Unfortunately it didn't have any viral effect, though I did get a few likes and laughs which were enough to make me happy. :)
- The April Fool's joke that surprised me the most was Google Analytics where was quietly introduced a feature that played your stats on piano or sitar!
- The funniest was of course The Aprils', who this year took on Kyary Pamyu Pamyu!
This week's video: capsule "Feelin' Alright"
April 1, 2012
Weekly revue: 2012 week #13 (March 24 to 30)
Exhibition: On Saturday last week I went to see Konishi-san's exhibition he's doing with photographer Kawakami Naomi and designer Madachi Yoshihiro. It's a peaceful reflection on life after the earthquake. Konishi-san wrote the text printed on the photos. His Pizzicato One album is also played as BGM. The exhibition is on until April 6.
Food: - Party at Sunday Bake Shop for the last day of its friendly cashier. Again lots of fun and good food! :)
- Some great curry at Tapir, Okubo.
- Eating a Tic Tac mint made me remember the taste of marshmallows in Pac-Man cereals!?
New music: - The latest compilation from Crue-L Records, "Crue-L Café"! I've never been disappointed by a Crue-L comp. A very good listen! I got it at Jet Set where it comes with a bonus mix CD by Takimi Kenji.
- Dorian's remix on "Big Collabo EP" is totally addictive! I listened to it a countless number of times!
- My Australian friend Peter V. put up some tracks of a new wave band he was part of in the 80's. Really good stuff! Also this video is awesome!
Playlist: Also Modern Choki Chokies, Aira Mitsuki and Sunaga t Experience, ...
Music release news: "Happy Holidays! ~80's Pops Covers~", Nakamura Kazuyoshi remix album, 2NE1 (with FPM track), "JPJZ Beautiful" jazz compilation.
- Also, the new Lupin the 3rd series (starting April 4 at night on Nippon TV/日テレ) has music by Kikuchi Naruyoshi! Watch the trailer below.
Lupin the 3rd new TV series trailer