Happy New Year, Nagoya! I’m writing you from my holiday in America, because that’s what I get for trying to sneak-off on vacation before the deadline. Now, I’ve written under the influence of several moods and substances in the past, but I believe this is the first time I’ve ever attempted “pen to paper” under the influence of 14 hours worth of jet lag. If you get only one thing from these ravings of a sleep-depraved brain that wasn’t too sharp to begin with, let it be that though the pickings may be slim, there are some excellent musics happening in Nagoya this month. See you in February when, hopefully, my circadian rhythm is back to normal.
X-Hall (22:00 | ¥3,900)
Israeli duo SKAZI makes sounds that I can only describe as industrial, psy-trance electro punk, and you can kick of your 2015 with this hot mess live.
Club Mago (22:00 | ¥3,000)
Local house heads love London DJs Dan Tyler & Conrad McDonnell, who have been producing smooth disco house under the moniker of the Idjut Boys for over 20 years now.
JUST A-STOMPIN’ Vol.25
Live & Lounge Vio (19:30 | ¥3,500)
Rockabilly may have been invented by Americans such as Carl Perkins, Bill Haley and Jerry Lee Lewis, but Swedish band Snakebite just goes to show that pompadours, sleeveless denim jackets and boogie woogie is beyond borders.
Tokuzo (18:00 | ¥2,800)
Anyone who spends even a modicum of time in Nagoya live house may ask themselves: is this it? Is every band either trying to copy and paste what came before or cover their lack of talent with excessive fashion? When I find myself in despair, I like to think on Budo Grape. This local bubblegum, synth-punk band is a reminder of how weird and wonderful Nagoya music can be. If you miss them this week, they’ll be back at Tokuzo on March 7.
Shooters (18:00 | ¥600)
This local dance group is thriving with new energy and eager to spread the joy of all that jazz. Join them on the dance floor this and every second Sunday for introduction lessons and open dances.
Club Buddha (16:00 | ¥2,000)
If you are finding that today’s music, what with the swearing and the playing too loud, doesn’t really appeal to you, then you just may enjoy this retro music party that ends early enough for you to be in bed before ten.
Open Jam Session
Gotham City (19:00 | ¥500)
This and every Monday, GC is the best place to experience and become a part of our growing, vibrant music scene.
Bottom Line (18:00 | ¥8,000)
Where I would usually spend several words tearing down most big hair bands from the 80s, EUROPE automatically gets a pass from my ire just for penning The Final Countdown; which is THE ultimate power ballad.
Anla Courtis Japan Tour
K.D. Japon (18:30 | ¥2,000)
I’m of the opinion that some musicians spend so much of their time and energy studying their craft, practicing any number of styles and genres, that one day they simply crack. This may explain why such a talented guitarist would dedicate his time to making experimental noise to the bewilderment of audiences around the world.
Juian Casablancas + The Voidz
Club Quattro (18:00 | ¥6,500)
The more love I have for an artist, the more apprehensive I am about their side-projects. I’m sorry, but fool me once, Dee Dee King (May he RIP.). And while this isn’t the first time at the solo rodeo for Mr. Casablancas, I’d hardly call the new album Tyranny much of an improvement from the forgetful Phrazes For The Young. But if you ever wanted to know what The Strokes would sound like through an acid blotter…
Nagoya Congress Center (18:00 | ¥10,500)
And filed under the category of “making Daniel feel old”, She’s So Unusual, Cyndi Lauper’s breakout album, just turned 30 years old. Released in the heyday of MTV, I will always remember watching the music video for Girls Just Want to Have Fun for the first time and thinking, “Awesome! Captain Lou is her dad!” (Hey, I was 7). And I tell you what, if I had an extra 100 bucks, I’d catch her Anniversary Tour where she performs the entire album while telling stories of her amazing career.
Diamond Hall, Apollo Theater and more
(12:00 | ¥4,800)
This annual festival is spread throughout 10 venues and features nearly 100 bands; which is only about 200 yen per band. And looking at the numbers, there’s very little chance that every one of those bands will suck. Full details at http://grandline.radcreation.jp/
Brian Cullen & Sarah Mulvey
Tokuzo (18:00 | ¥2,500)
This lovely couple with their kawaii folk music always puts me in mind of Captain and Tennille, except with better songs and a happier ending.
Lillies and Remains
Club Upset (18:00 | ¥3,800)
Romanticism, the third album from this Kyoto-based post-punk band, is quite good. It has more of the high-energy yet still somber music that has garnered them a strong following here and abroad.
Zepp Nagoya (16:00 | ¥7,500)
While I can appreciate that the members of this pop punk band have matured, listening to their newest work I just find myself saying the same thing every time: MORE FIDDLE! Aussie band Tonight Live will also be there as part of the Ten Hundred Miles Tour.
Blue Note (¥7,500)
Powerful vocals and a powerful performance, this soul man is often heralded as the “second coming of Marvin Gaye.”
XEROX & Vertical Mode
X-Hall (23:00 | ¥2,500)
I’ve been going to clubs for a long time (we already established that I’m quite old), but I don’t think I’ve ever enjoyed a psy-trance party; maybe it’s my aversion to psychotropic drugs or just bad music. If you have no such qualms, get there before 23:00 to save 500 yen at the door.