Writing about the state of the Osaka club scene (and Austin Mahone) for Japan Times

I went to Osaka recently and wrote about the state of the city's club scene a year after the "anti-dancing" law was revised: OSAKA – Around two dozen people shuffle about the dark interior of Alzar, a recently opened nightclub on the eighth floor of a building in Osaka’s Chuo Ward that also features a [...]

By | June 23rd, 2017|Japan, Music|Comments Off on Writing about the state of the Osaka club scene (and Austin Mahone) for Japan Times

Talking to AI about her new album

Last week in the Japan Times, I caught up with R&B and hip-hop J-Pop artist AI to talk about her new album, among other topics. There was a time when Japanese music labels were concerned that Ai Carina Uemura’s music sounded too American due to her R&B style. “Like, from the beginning of my career. [...]

By | June 5th, 2017|Japan, Music|Comments Off on Talking to AI about her new album

Reviewing Kikagaku Moyo for Pitchfork

Reviewed the latest from Kikagaku Moyo for Pitchfork. Japanese underground artists possess a flair for myth-making, from Les Rallizes Dénudés’ shrouded history to eventual Boredoms founder Yamantaka Eye driving a bulldozer on stage for a gig. Tokyo’s Kikagaku Moyo have their fair share of good yarns since forming in 2012. The first song on their [...]

By | June 1st, 2017|Japan, Music|Comments Off on Reviewing Kikagaku Moyo for Pitchfork

Talking to NECRONOMIDOL and writing about other bands pushing metal in new directions for Bandcamp

Caught up with the idol group NECRONOMIDOL, and also wrote about other Japanese groups pushing metal forward for Bandcamp. In many ways, NECRONOMIDOL look a lot like other groups in the Japanese “female idol” genre, a corner of J-Pop in which groups of young women perform chirpy pop while dancing. The group consists of five [...]

By | May 18th, 2017|Japan, Music|Comments Off on Talking to NECRONOMIDOL and writing about other bands pushing metal in new directions for Bandcamp

Going to Niconico Chokaigi for Metropolis

Went to Niconico Chokaigi for Metropolis, soaked it all in. As I waited for a kabuki performance to start, I watched a packed arena applaud a man who appeared on the venue’s big screen, dressed up as the defunct soda marketing character Pepsiman. It was one of many surreal moments on April 29th and 30th [...]

By | May 17th, 2017|Anime, Japan, Movies, Music, Travel, Video Games|Comments Off on Going to Niconico Chokaigi for Metropolis

Writing about Cornelius’ new single at Pitchfork

I reviewed the first song from Corenlius' forthcoming album -- his first in 11 years -- for Pitchfork. Keigo Oyamada has kept busy over the past 11 years, but he’s often done so just outside of the spotlight. Since the artist better known as Cornelius released his last full-length, Sensuous in 2006, he’s played as [...]

By | May 15th, 2017|Japan, Music|Comments Off on Writing about Cornelius’ new single at Pitchfork

Small editorial off of recent US trip for The Japan Times

I wrote a small editorial for the Japan Times about my recent experience in the United States. It’s official: You can’t escape politics in America. On a recent trip to Seattle, everyone I spoke to wanted to talk about President Donald Trump. Fittingly, the 2017 edition of the Museum of Pop Culture’s Pop Conference, which [...]

By | May 7th, 2017|Japan, Music|Comments Off on Small editorial off of recent US trip for The Japan Times