moumoon and PASSEPIED, Two of Japan’s Rising Talents, Announce Special One-off London Show

moumoon x PASSEPIEDEvent Name: JAPAN UNDERGROUND presents moumoon x PASSEPIED – JAPAN RISING Warm Up
Facebook Event Page: https://www.facebook.com/events/454371931382680/
Date: Wednesday 13 May 2015 (from 7pm)
Location: The Pipeline (basement), 94 Middlesex Street, London E1 7DA [map]
Nearest Tube/Train: London Liverpool Street, Aldgate, Shoreditch High Street
Entry: £5

Schedule:
7-8pm: Japanese music DJ session
8pm: PASSEPIED
9pm: moumoon
10pm-close: Japanese music DJ session

Two of Japan’s hottest rising talents, moumoon and PASSEPIED have already been selected to represent the best in new talents from Japan at The Great Escape Festival in Brighton between 14-16 May 2015, and now they have announce a very special one-off show in London to warm up for the festival appearance, accompanies by DJ sessions from UK-based Japanese music label JPU Records.

PASSEPIED (www.passepied.info)

Named after French composer Claude Debussy, PASSEPIED have became a sensation in the Japanese music scene since forming in 2009. With their unique music style crafted by keyboardist and founder Narita Haneda, who graduated the Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music with a degree in classical music, and illustrations, artwork and music clip animation created by the band’s own vocalist, Natsuki Ogoda. This will be PASSEPIED’s very first performance outside of Japan.

moumoon (www.moumoon.com)

moumoon is a Japanese group formed by YUKA (Vo.) and MASAKI (Gt./Composer). They both grow up with classical music with Masaki playing piano and YUKA playing violin. Their present musical style covers various types of music such as pop, alternative rock, electronica, folk and indie rock with YUKA’s lyrics and vocal adding scenery and a story to Masaki’s sensitive but dynamic melodies. After moumoon was formed, their songs were power played on radio and used in many TV commercials earning them name recognition. Their latest single is also currently being used in hit new anime series Assassination Classroom as its closing theme.

moumoon and PASSEPIED are in the UK to take part in the JAPAN RISING showcase at The Great Escape on Saturday 16 May, where they will be joined by Yosi Horikawa. The showcase is supported by The Foundation for Promotion of Music Industry and Culture (PROMIC) and Recording Industry Association of Japan (RIAJ), and coordinated by Japan Underground. It is part of a remit to create overseas showcase opportunities for performers at Tokyo International Music Market; further showcases will follow.

dir en grey Return with Double London Date

dir en grey
Japanese avant-garde metallers dir en grey return to the UK this May, ready to perform tracks from their brand new album ARCHE for the first time live in the UK.

The band will be performing at the O2 Academy Islington in London on Saturday 23 and Sunday 24 May 2015 as part of the European leg of their TOUR15 THE UNSTOPPABLE LIFE tour, which also includes shows in Germany, France, Holland, Poland and Belarus. Regular tickets are on sale now from TicketWeb with a face value of £28.12. VIP tickets are available from See Tickets and start at £80.

Bold and sensitive, chaotic and melodic, over the course of nine albums, dir en grey have become one of the biggest names in Japanese rock to break outside of their home country. Embraced by the international rock media, support for the band has been overwhelmingly positive, especially in the UK, where they became the first (and so far only) Japanese band to appear on the cover of Kerrang! Magazine.

New album ARCHE is out from 2 March on double CD from Gan Shin Records (order from Amazon), and is also out now digitally on Amazon MP3, iTunes and partically on Spotify.

Hyper Japan Christmas Market 2014 to go Hyper for Japanese Music

Hyper Japan Christmas Marker 2014

With Hyper Japan Christmas Market only a matter of days away, we take a look at what the event has on offer for fans of Japanese music. Taking place between 14-16 November 2014 at Olympia in London, the Christmas Market sees the UK’s biggest J-culture event take a more relaxed approached than it’s massive summer event at Earls Court, focusing instead more on the market side of the event – yet, we’d say that the music line-up is equally, if not more, exciting than the summer’s event. Here’s why:

NeM: Japanese Fusion Band

NeMWhen: Saturday – 7:30pm
NeM is the combination of five traditional Japanese musicians living in the UK and Italy. Amongst their ranks is shamisen veteran Hibiki Ichikawa – the only qualified teacher of his instrument in Great Britain. The group’s name, NeM, holds the meaning of the sound of Japanese instruments dancing through peoples’ minds throughout the world – at least that’s what the Hyper Japan website says. Personally, we’re a sucker for the koto and can’t wait to hear what they have to offer. They’ll play a special collection of folk songs from all over the world, performed with a distinct Japanese flavour.

Naruto Singer Joe Inoue and Diana Garnet

Joe Inoue and Diana GarnetWhen: Sunday – 4pm.
Joe Inoue is probably best known in the UK for two of his songs being used in anime: “Closer” was used as the fourth Naruto Shippuden opening song, and “Kaze no Gotoku” was used for a season of Gin Tama. He’s also a regular part of J-MELO, a television programme by NHK World which airs in over 150 countries. You will be able to buy Joe Inoue CDs and merchandise from JPU Records’ booth throughout the event.
He’ll be joined on stage on Sunday with Diana Garnet who recently had her a major debut – the turning point for her was winning the Nihon TV 2013 “Nodojiman THE WORLD” contest.

SIRO-A

SIRO-AWhen: Friday – 2:30pm. Saturday: 12:00 noon. Sunday: 12-noon.
Tipped as Japan’s answer to the Blue Man Group, this team of techno wizards combine humour, music and live performance into a stage show that is a must to experience. They’re also the longest running commercial stage-show from Japan to ever hit London’s west end. Check out their YouTube channel for a taste of what to expect.

Anna Yano:

Anna YanoWhen: Every day.
Yano Anna is an Aomoji-kei model affiliated with ASOBISYSTEM, the same management company as Kyary Pamyu Pamyu. She’s also a singer, having combined her work with her love of anime by performing “All Over” and “Shape My Story”, the opening theme songs for Magica Wars and Stella Women’s Academy, Class C3 respectively. Don’t worry, we didn’t know what Aomoji-kei was either, so here’s what MTV81 had to say about it; “Aomoji is basically dressing the way you want as opposed to what society thinks looks good; in other words, it’s about dressing for yourself, and not for what the runway and chain shops dictate… and certainly not to please boys”.

Miyu Koike

Koike MiyuWhen: Sunday – 2pm
Having had her major debut with Victor Entertainment this summer, Idol Koike Miyu will now also be making her UK debut at Hyper Japan Christmas Market. As well as a singer with seven indie singles under her belt, Miyu is also a regular talent on Japanese TV and radio shows. She’s known for her quirky sense of humour and being a something of a “Dojikko” (extremely clumsy) personality. Let’s hope she doesn’t fall off the stage!

Tamashii Taiko Drumming

Tamashii TaikoWhen: Saturday – 8:15pm
Tamashii perform traditional and contemporary pieces using a variety of traditional Japanese rhythms while the players are allowed to explode into their own unique and colourful solos throughout the songs. The combination of uniformity and the individual freedom of expression is what give Tamashii its strength as a team and character as a performance group. The Group show that Taiko is not merely drumming, but an emotion that the whole body and mind can experience, apparently.

Nihon Buyo and Folk Music

Nihon BuWhen: Saturday – 2pm. Sunday – 10:30am
Nihon Buyo is a refined form of traditional Japanese dance and has been improved over four centuries. It has its strongest influence from Kabuki Buyo, but it was also influenced by the circular movements and props of Noh and the spinning and jumping expressions of Japanese Folk Dance. While performed independently by specialists, it is particularly known for being the style of dancing performed by geisha.
Make sure you check out the performance on Sunday, as shamisen star Hibiki Ichikawa and enka singer Akari Mochizuki will join the performance.

Of course! JPU Records will be another highlight – visit their booth throughout the event to buy and talk about music! They will also have a very special one-off clearance sale of third-party CDs. A great time to grab a bargain or just try something new.

Further details on [Champagne]’s UK Live Debut

When: Wednesday 15 May 2013 from 7pm.
Where: The Pipeline (basement), 94 Middlesex Street, London, E1 7DA.
Tickets: £7.50 advance (buy here), £10 on the door.
Support: Area 11 // NO CARS // Ken Kobayashi & The Colors // DJs and special guests
Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/116765661855283/

Here’s some updated information about the special showcase show we have coming up this Wednesday with Japanese indie rockers [Champagne]! Check out all the bands involved, their stage times and don’t forget to share this page with your friends before tickets sell out!

[Champagne]

Stage time 9:30-10:30
Fresh from supporting the likes of Muse and Kasabian in Japan, Tokyo’s hottest new indie band [Champagne] venture to London to pay homage to the country that originally inspired them to create music; the UK. In Japan they’ve topped the indie charts, played major festivals such as Summer Sonic and become one of the most talked about new pop-rock bands of the last few years. You can check out all of their catchy music videos by clicking here and scrolling down. Or click the video below for one of our personal favourites:

Area 11

Stage time 8:40-9:10
Bristol’s finest Minecrafters (see this music video of theirs for reference)  are back! The boys released their debut album All The Lights in the Sky earlier this year, and it went straight to the top of Amazon’s MP3 rock chart, and entered at number 10 on the official UK rock chart. Earlier this month they supported My Vitriol at Koko in Camden, and now they’re here to support [Champagne]. Here’s a video of them tearing up the stage of Japan Underground, supporting FACT earlier this year:

No Cars

Stage time 7:55-8:25
Quirky all Japanese girl band No Cars have built a reputation for their zany live shows. Having supported the likes of Shonen Knife and Adam Ant, the girls, when not singing about tuna and cello-tape, have been known to bully members of the audience, do cartwheels, and generally cause a bit of a ruckus in the cutest way possible.

Ken Kobayashi and Colors

Stage time 7:15-7:40
Ken Kobayashi is a singer, songwriter and a producer based in London. Ken was born in London in 1988 between a German father and a Japanese mother. Spending childhood in Tokyo, Berlin and London, Ken was exposed to a wide range of range of music genres and movements. Ken started writing songs when he learnt to play the guitar at the age of 16. In 2009, He released his debut album My Big Foot Over the Sky.

Tickets are selling out fast – see you there!!

Related Stories:
JAPAN UNDERGROUND presents [Champagne]‘s First UK Live – 15 May

JAPAN UNDERGROUND presents [Champagne]’s First UK Live – 15 May

When: Wednesday 15 May 2013 from 7pm.
Where: The Pipeline (basement), 94 Middlesex Street, London, E1 7DA.
Tickets: £7.50 advance (buy), £10 on the door.
Support: Area 11 // NO CARS // Ken Kobayashi & The Colors // DJs and special guests
Facebook event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/116765661855283/

From performing on the streets of Harajuku, to rocking tens of thousands at SUMMER SONIC and a host of other top Japanese festivals, to selling out every tour they’ve ever done. [Champagne] are living proof that it is possible to go from indie heroes to full-blown rockstars in a matter of years, and now they’re ready to burst out from Japan for the next chapter in their musical conquest by performing in the UK for the first time.

[Champagne] will hold their first overseas headline show at The Pipeline, London on Wednesday 15 May 2013. Tickets for the show in London are on sale now (click here), priced at £7.50. They will also be available on the door whilst stocks last for £10.

The band will be joined with support from Brit internet sensation Area 11 – who recently celebrated chart success with their debut album ‘All the Lights in the Sky’ – and the quirky Japanese all-girl group No Cars, plus DJs and special guests.
Led by Yohei Kawakami (vocals and drums), who grew up in Syria, and Hiroyuki Isobe (bass and chorus) who grew up in America, [Champagne] manage to fuse the best from western and eastern music to create unique and catchy pop-rock songs. Since forming in 2007, they have released three albums; the first entitled ‘Where’s My Potato?’, followed by Oricon Indie Chart topper ‘I want to go to Hawaii’, and then ‘Schwarzenegger’, with a fourth hit album expected to be released soon.

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