They prove that traditional Japanese instruments can tackle any style!
3 Nov 2017 - 12:36 PM  UPDATED 3 Nov 2017 - 12:36 PM

A focus on the big J-pop developments in this week’s SBS PopAsia J-Pop roundup…

Wagaki Band

Japanese traditional sounds collide with a little Western swing in Wagaki Band’s latest number. The group, best known for playing fast-paced rock numbers using instruments such as the shamisen and taiko, tries out something a little different on “Synchronicity,” hinted at in the accompanying clip which finds the band performing in a place resembling olden-days London. Japanese instruments still play a heavy role, but they appear in a more subtle way. Ultimately, though, Wagaki Band show just how versatile these tools can be. Check it out below.


The Hi-STANDARD comeback campaign keeps on going. After releasing their first album in over a decade to resounding sales success, the trio shared a new video for the whip-fast “All Generations.” Clocking in at just under two minutes, it’s a driving little tune about seemingly winking to the fact the band themselves are back — and how anyone of any age can appreciate their zippy pop-punk.


Nothing beats a good song named after the group themselves. Ferocious idol outfit GANG PARADE deliver a solid self-referencing song with “GANG PARADE.” Maybe it’s intentional or maybe this is exactly what they were gunning for, but it proves to be a good intro to what the BiS-adjacent is all about. “GANG PARADE” chugs along on buzzsaw guitar and hey-hey choruses, sliding into a drop designed for a mosh pit illuminated by glow sticks. Watch the clip below.

Chart News

TWICE and BLACKPINK have been flexing their muscles on Japan’s charts all year, but this week reminded that the old masters of K-pop can also get in on the fun. TVXQ topped the Oricon chart’s album list last week with their latest full-length effort, a reminder of the long-running boy band’s charm in Japan. It also nabbed them a new distinction — they became the foreign male artist with the most number-one appearances on said ranking. Don’t think they needed more accolades, but good for those two dudes. On the singles side, Keyakizaka46 earned the top with their newest song.

Video of the Week

The latest clip from whisper-rapper-slash-singer Izumi Makura is a delight for the eyes. Click below to see neon-bright shots of people playing with kendama and zoom ins on an octopus tattoo.


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