The Salinger – One And Only

The Salinger are a Japanese alternative rock band that formed in 1997. I bought their album “Let It Rock” way back in the early 2000’s and thought it was a decent listen. While I did not deliberately seek their music out since then, I always hoped to find another album of theirs in a bargain bin somewhere, which is what happened a couple of weeks ago. I found it at a Hard Off in the central city, in a bargain bin full of mostly rubbish CDs for only 100 yen.

This album came out in 1999, the same year as “Let It Rock”, which explains why both albums sound the same. It is good rocky stuff with a bit of a punky vibe to it too. To listen to samples of the songs click here.

It is very hard to find information about the band on the interwebs. They have a website but there has been no activity on it since 2013.

Nothing great, but worth a listen every now and then.

Music count 2019: 23

The Charlatans

It is a holiday tradition of ours to visit a Book Off in any new city we visit, so our trip to Hokkaido gave us a few opportunities to do just so.

We found a Book Off near the Sapporo Beer factory where we had a nice but expensive dinner. The selection in Book Off was not very good, this was my only choice. Recently I have been getting into The Charlatans, and as it was only 280 yen it was an easy buy.

It is a very good album, and I might say one of their better ones. This was released in 1995, but it sounds just as fresh today as it probably did then.

We did visit another Book Off in Hokkaido, but again the pickings were slim, and I am just not interested in CDs anymore, so it was for the best.

Music count 2019: 22

The Best of MK Arular

The musical purchases have slowed down considerably recently, here are a few that I need to catch up on.

Blondie – The Best Of

This is a double-up my brother gave me when I was in NZ, and I was chuffed to get it as I like early Blondie.

All of the good songs are here including “Heart of Glass”, “Hangin’ on the Telephone, “The Tide is High”, and more. There is no real need to buy any other Blondie albums as they are one of those bands that have one or two great hit songs on an album, then a lot of filler. Later Blondie was just plain awful (1982’s “The Hunter” is a terrible album).

Good stuff.

MKULTRA – The Beautiful Mind of MK

This is a Bandcamp purchase I had my eye on for a while, so I finally bought it a few weeks back, I think I paid $5 for it.

It is an experimental hip-hop release with a singer who likes to swear a lot and talk about all kinds of stuff…not really sure what he is going on about really. I quite like it though, something different.

M.I.A. – Arular

I was in Book Off intending to buy a CD by a band called Beef Terminal when I came across this, and decided it would be worth getting instead.

A few years back M.I.A. (she is from Sri Lanka, but now based in the U.K.) had a hit called “Paper Airplanes“, whichis a very catchy number, so I thought this album might be worth a try.

On first listen though it did not grab me at all, can’t really put my finger on why. Perhaps it needs a few more listens. Here is a track to give you an idea.

Still, she is original and has a message to get across. Respectamundo.

Music count 2019: 19

Buda Muses Tori

It is time again to catch up on a few Cd purchases.

Buda – The C Sides

I bought this for $2 at Slow Boats Records in Wellington.

Luke Buda is a New Zealand musician who makes darn good music, and this release is no exception.

Throwing Muses – University

I am not a big fan of the Throwing Muses, but if I come across anything by them used I will probably buy it. And I came across this for only 108 yen, so it had to be bought.

And it is good. I am still not an enthusiastic fan, but I like it nonetheless.

Tori Amos – The Beekeeper

This is another CD I got from my brother whilst I was visiting him in Wellington, he let me loose on his collection saying I could take what I want, so this is one that I grabbed.

Very Tori album, which is to say that it is good listening.

Music count 2019: 16

Three Miles of Chaotic Fiction

I have three more Cd’s to spew forth about.

Various artists – This is Cult Fiction

This is a CD I got from my brother when I was in NZ. He kindly let me loose on his multitude of CD’s, saying I could take what I wanted, so this was one of the two that I nabbed.

As the title suggests, it is a compilation of music from various Quentin Tarantino films as well as a few others like Twin Peaks, and includes tracks such as “Little Green Bag”, “Miserilou”, “The Harder They Come”, and plenty more excellent songs.

Good listening.

Miles Davis – Seven Steps to Heaven

I found this at a Book Off somewhere, near Narita airport I think, and bought it immediately because it is Miles.

No need to explain how good the music is.

Sepultura – Chaos A.D.

I found this at Hard Off for only 108 yen. I am not really a huge Sepultura fan, but this album is considered to be a metal classic, so I couldn’t pass it up.

It has a few good songs, but most of them are too slow for my liking, I like my metal heavy and pretty fast.

Sepultura, if you don’t know, are a Brazilian metal band that have had a turbulent history with most of the original members now gone. Two of them are brothers and for years were not talking to each other, but they have made up and now have a band called Cavalera Conspiracy (Cavalera is their surname). This album was made before the brothers started fighting with each other, and was the last they made together as Sepultura.

Music count 2019: 13

An Agglomeration of Variegated Aural Pleasures

My recent trip to New Zealand was on the whole quite fruitless when it came to buying music, last time I bought a dozen or so discs. I bought only one used CD this time, and the two other CDs I got were from my brother who graciously let me take anything I desired from his large collection of CDs, so I took a couple. I did however get a brillo birthday present from him which made my day, as well as a couple of double-ups he had. And I have since added a few more after arriving back in Japan, so here is what I have in no particular order.

Burial – Subtemple/Beachfires

This is what my brother gave me for my birthday, and when he handed it to me I was quite flabbergasted. I never thought I would see another Burial release on vinyl as they are hard to get, in Japan at least, so I was extremely chuffed to get it. When I think back on all of the birthday presents I have ever received, I must say that this one takes the crown.

This is a very Burial release in that it is very atmospheric, so much so that it is pretty much devoid of actual melody and is more of a series of random crackly sounds and ghostly voices, but that is what I like about Burial. Judge for yourself though…

YouTube comment for this release: People are hating on this but it’s actually top tier dark ambient. Foreboding and uneasy, perfect to set up the stage for Beachfires, which is the epic culmination. I think they’re meant to be listened back to back, the split is just so people don’t feel too intimidated by the length. If there was a sonic representation of the coming of Cthulhu, this would be it.

Spot on.

Arctic Monkeys – Suck It And See

Last week I went into Book Off to see what is what and found this. I was not aware of this 2011 album so I was most pleased to find it.

And it is another great Arctic Monkeys release. Not really much more needs to be said about it.

The Cribs – Men’s Needs, Women’s Needs, Whatever

Another Book Off find, and another album I had never seen before. And also another great listen. Fun stuff.

That is all I will write about for now. There are plenty more but I have not listened to them yet, so I will do so then report back.

Music count 2019: 10