Sonic Surf City
Huck Finn (18:30 | ¥3,800)
Ah, July, the start of the so-called dry season for Nagoya, when we get passed up for the music festival circuit. And while I’m not going to lie about how much it sucks that we won’t get any love from the impressive lineups at Fuji Rock and Summer Sonic this year, I would rather focus on what we do have this month: a lot of weirdness. From experimental electronica to freeform jazz to Sonic Surf City, a surf punk band from Sweden of all places: Nagoya in July is fucking strange. And I wouldn’t have it any other way.
The Sexy Pool Party
BJ American Bar (17:30 | ¥3000)
The Sexy Party continues to raise the bar for events in Nagoya, and then puts a scantily-clad dancer on top of it. We’re getting an early jump on the summer holiday with the hottest in dance music from DJs PauloAtNight, Crush Monkey, dij, scrying, M@tt, Deren, Ten and Erika, as well as a jaw-dropping dance show and the fiery flair bartenders that BJ is known for. Wear your swimwear for a free BJ burger for your next visit. Get there before 20:00 for an extra drink ticket. And make sure you get your picture taken in the balloon pool; it’ll help you to remember why you woke up in a strange bed. The party continues at #01 Sound Lounge from 1:30 to 5:00 (Free entry for Sexy Ticket Holders!)
Club Mago (22:00 | ¥3,500)
I’ve listened to several sets from Berlin DJ Mr. Ties, and I’m still not sure how to explain what he does. A good lesson in just enjoying good music for what it is, without getting bogged down in what to call it.
Nagoya Club Jazz Festival 2014
Lounge and Live VIO (18:30 | ¥4,500)
Featuring several talented DJs spinning jazzy, funky and soulful dance music, including Swedish turntablist extraordinaire, Mad Mats
Apollo Base (17:30 | ¥3,000)
Listening to their newest single, Like A Cat, it’s clear that the godmothers of J-punk have still got it. And by “it”, I mean their proclivity for mixing odd themes with punk chords. MEOW MEOW MEOW!
Red Dragon Cartel
Club Quattro (18:00 | ¥7,500)
After many tumultuous years playing with legends Ozzy Osborne and DIO, guitarist Rick E. Lee is finally calling the shots in his own band. This is some pure heavy metal.
Club 3Star (18:00 | ¥6,000)
This death metal band comes from Poland, because of course it does.
The Second Coming
Club RAD (19:00 | ¥1,700)
I love me some Ghost of Matsubara, but they might want to check their math. Counting their most recent incarnation welcoming new drummer, Kota, that makes this the Third Coming of the ass-kickingest of local bands. The Falling Sky 1st Avenue and Shibata Heavy-Industries will also be there for their newest debut.
KC Jazz Orchestra
Goya Moon 58 (18:00 | ¥3,500)
Located out towards Yagoto on the blue subway line, Irinaka Station is a bit far to go for live music, but it’s worth it on this night. If not for the big band sounds of the KCJO, then for the rare chance to enjoy the Hawaiian cuisine and comfortable vibe of Goya Moon.
Tomo Shagger Tribute Band
Shooters (19:00 | ¥500)
Every time I think the Shagg-man has hung up his sequined costume for good, I get a call. “Danny, mate, I’ve got a new band together.” The Tomo Shagger cannot quit making funky rock music any more than Nagoya can quit his onstage antics.
Lounge and Live VIO (18:00 | ¥3,000)
Self-described “electro unit of mystery”, The Sun Paulo are kicking off what I hope becomes a regular night of electronic jam bands. Local drum-explosion egoistic 4 leaves will be there, too.
FEVER TOURS 2014
Huck Finn (18:30 | ¥0)
I missed Tokyo’s STOROBOY the last time they brought their fresh New Wave sound to my town, but not this time. It doesn’t hurt that our own HOT HOT SEX is opening, and it’s FREE (but you do have to buy 2 drinks).
white white sisters
Apollo Base (19:00 | ¥3,000)
Celebrating the release of their first full-length album SOMETHING WONDROUS, WWS is some of the best indietronic music this scene has to offer.
Electronic Shocking Super Night
Out Record (21:00 | ¥0)
By day, Out Record is an eclectic vinyl shop. After 16:00 it turns into a fairly happening sound bar, playing host to several small listening parties every month like this night of live electronic music and art, courtesy of Steve McLellan and crew.
Love Is The Message Release Party
Club Mago (22:00 | ¥4,000)
Before disco became a pop phenomenon there was the Gallery, an underground club in New York. Who better to tell the story of the early days of that scene than Nicky Siano, founder of the Gallery and resident DJ of Club 54. His new documentary Love Is The Message tells the story of a single night at the Gallery in 1977, and he’s bringing that story, the fashion and the music to Nagoya for one night only.
Café Domina (22:00 | ¥2,500)
Featuring Jamal Moss of Chicago and his experimental approach to dance music; you’re either going to love it or hate it. There is no room for lukewarm where sounds like this are involved.
Cafe Domina (22:00 | ¥1,500)
A plethora of dance sounds with DJs Noda, AGO, Chris Ollier, Halcyon and Zig-Nine with special guest Cloak and Dagger. And it just wouldn’t be a Domina party without an unusual food offering, and this month they’ll be serving up Mediterranean cuisine because it’s delicious. DOOR ¥1500 (1D)
Gentle Forest 5 and the Gentle Forest Sisters
STAR EYES (18:00 | ¥3,000)
I have a hard time not comparing The Gentle Forest Sisters to the Andrew Sisters. Both are groups of lovely girls singing nice songs from a bygone era, a sound complimented by the swinging jazz numbers of The Gentle Forest 5. Highly recommended.
Club Quattro (18:00 | ¥8,000)
Adding to the beyond the ordinary for this month, this talented gathering of musicians has been described as “where deco meets disco meets decon”. Not for the casual jazz fan.
Bottom Line (16:00 | ¥5,500)
Celebrating the vibrant Polynesian culture of Tahiti with dance performances and live music courtesy of Sabrina Laughlin and friends
Club JB’s (22:00 | ¥3,500)
Tokyo DJs Mademoiselle Yulia and Takeru John Otoguro aren’t subtle; their sets are 100% crowd pleasers. No thinking required.
Plastic Factory (19:00 | ¥1,000)
This monthly event has been the hub of the underground art and music scene for over 6 years. It’s a good place to start if you think Nagoya ain’t got none of that.
Blue Note (¥7,900)
Lots of jazz this month; which is cool. Blending it with hip hop: even cooler.