Review

Various Artists

Alien Parade Japan

Alien Transistor • 2022

Markus Acher is a cunningarchivist of his interest in contemporary indie music from Japan and thus also his own entanglements with that particular scene. In addition to a number of albums by the duo Tenniscoats, the Notwist co-founder also released the compilation »Hallo Zayaendo!« via his label Alien Transistor, a collection of songs dedicated to the brass band of the same name co-founded by Tenniscoats member Saya Ueno, which in turn was inspired by Acher’s own band Hochzeitskapelle. After the latter was confronted with even more Japanese music working prominently with wind instruments during a tour in Japan, Acher went on to put together »Alien Parade Japan«. The compilation brings together some pieces that were already written in Japan in the 1990s with newer material that originated in this heterogeneous – well, what are we talking about, exactly? A scene, movement, contingent phenomenon? Anyhow: similar to the compilation »Minna Miteru«, also co-released by Alien Transistor together with Morr Music, the tone is sweet or bittersweet at best, intimate and yet not at all intrusive. Gentle folk songs, eccentric post-rock or the full brass band sound: the 22 pieces ave a diffuse but ultimately friendly mood in common. Think of a Hubro album, if it had not been created in Scandinavia in an exchange between folkloristic forms and jazz, but halfway between Munich and Kyoto with detours through the respective traditional song catalogues of both cultures. A treasure trove of beautiful songs and, on top of that, the perfect soundtrack for garden parties on breezy summer nights.

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Alien Parade Japan
from 28.99€