Club Rock ‘n’ Roll (18:30 | ¥4,000)
As much as I enjoy the indie pop of this Swedish band, I can’t start the month off dumping that kind of moolah into the very first show. A decision made so much more difficult when considering that geek-girl rockers OLD LACEY BED and adora-folk act Special Favorite Music are also playing.
Club Quattro (18:30 | ¥2,000)
Now that’s more like it. 20 bucks is a damn-fine price to hear the Irish punk of this Tokyo band.
Club Quattro (18:00 | ¥4,860)
American otakus are probably already familiar with the kickass soundtrack the pillows did for the cult-hit anime FLCL. But even if you hate Japanimation, don’t let your disdain for big eyes and speed lines keep you from catching the best indie rock band in Japan.
Apollo Base (19:00 | ¥4,300)
Schizophrenic rock; there is no better way to describe the smorgasbord of sounds of San Francisco band Deerhoof.
Scorpion Death Rock
Club JB’s (21:00 | ¥1,500)
This night dedicated to the rock and fashion of the fifties won’t cost you too much bread, daddy-o. As added incentive, The Lindy Hop Aichi group are providing free dance lessons.
Home For Christmas
Chikusa Playhouse (5 shows | ¥2,500)
From the theater troupe that brought you Churchill in Love and Dreamcatcher, Home For Christmas is a comical look at the joys and pains that comes with celebrating the holidays with family. This show contains adult content, so maybe leave the kiddies at home, Opening night performance at 19:30, with shows at 13:00 and 18:00 on Saturday and Sunday. Reserve your seats at firstname.lastname@example.org. This show in in English with Japanese subtitles.
Brian Cullen and Friends
Coat of Arms (18:30)
Get your wassail on with Dr. Cullen and his talented coterie of singer and musicians. This month there’s been a promise of traditional Christmas songs in lieu of “Last Christmas”, which plays ad naseum of here.
Club Buddha (22:00 | ¥2,000)
A night of mod-ness for all of you suit-wearing, Vespa-riding, Quadrophenia-listening hipsters in town; featuring the classic reggae tunes of DJ Ricky.
I LOVE – WE LOVE 80’s MUSIC
Plastic Factory (21:00 | ¥1,500)
This celebration of all things totally rad to the max is your best chance to relive the joy of new wave music, Jordache jeans & perms. Featuring a live performance from Zengo Kankei and Matthew Bowden, the WHAM! Of Nagoya, with DJ Nick Shotter on the decks.
Merry Swingin’ X’Mas Dance
Shooters (18:00 | ¥600)
Cut a rug with Nagoya Swings at their annual Christmas ball. Don’t let two left feet keep you from joining the jingle bell hop. They always offer free dance lessons at the start of the evening.
Club Upset (18:30 | ¥3,500)
Originally from Tokyo but living in London and having deep roots in the San Francisco acid sound, Bo Ningen is one of the loudest, trippiest bands performing today.
Club Quattro (18:30 | ¥6,600)
The rock and roll scene of the late 90s was a music wasteland with so many bands trying desperately to hitch their wagon to the greater talent that came before them. The scourge of living in a “post-grunge” world still haunts the industry today, as evidenced by the fact that Buckcherry is touring again, though I’m certain nobody asked.
Bottom Line (18:00 | ¥6,500)
As dreamy as their pop music is, I don’t think my wallet would forgive me for paying that much to hear this French band live.
Club R.A.D. (18:30 | ¥3,000)
I honestly intended to review the new album from this garage rock band, the awesomely named Donkey Knows What Is Love, but the first single reminded me so much of The Strokes that I listened to Is This It instead. It seemed a better use of my time.
Club JB’s (22:00 | ¥3,500)
The second Saturday of the month is usually the best night to get out and shake what your momma gave ya, but I cannot remember a time when so much international talent was performing on the same night. First up there’s Brooklyn-raised, producer and DJ Joaquin ‘Joe’ Claussell and his deep & soulful house tracks.
Café Domina (22:00 | ¥3,000)
If you prefer your house music on the funky side, Detroit house pioneer Alton Miller has got what you need.
Club Mago (22:00 | ¥3,500)
And finally, the progressive house of Argentinean producer Hernán Cattáneo has long been a favorite for the SMASH fans, second only to the zealous love they hold for DJ OGAWA.
Lover:Z (22:00 | ¥2,500)
Even with the all the legendary talent playing on this night, I would still put Nagoya’s groundbreaking gay, lesbian et al party at the top of the list of best parties happening this and every month.
Blue Note (19:00 | ¥8,000)
This lovely legend of the cabaret is very popular over here, and seemingly tours Japan non-stop. So if you miss her soulful take on jazz and pop classics, just wait a bit. She’ll come around again,
Club Mago (22:00 | ¥3,000)
I wouldn’t spend my hard-earned cheddar on a night of techno music if Jesus himself were the DJ (everyone knows Christ is a house-head anyway). Though I have no doubt German producer Sammy Dee and Fumiya Tanaka will have no trouble filling the house with their subdued and continuous beats.
X-Mas Party Live
Roxx (18:30 | ¥2,000)
If Scrooge had been visited by local alt/punk band Ghost of Matsubara instead of the Ghost of Christmas Yet To Come, they would’ve rocked that geezer straight into his grave. Then Tiny Tim would toss away his crutches and join the mosh pit. Now, that’s a Christmas carol!
X-Hall (22:00 | ¥3,900)
Something a bit different, X-Hall is offering a night of techno & trance topped off with a psy-trance set by special guest Protoculture from South Africa
Club Zion (16:30 | ¥2,500)
Recordshop Zoo in Osu is wishing Nagoya a Happy New Year filled with ska music, with a double record release party featuring The Rodeos and The Autocratics.
Club Buddha (22:00 | ¥2,000)
A 90s rock party with several local DJs including Yamada of FILE-UNDER RECORDS, whose idea of good 90s music could be quite different from yours. Stop by his shop in Osu for an appetizer.