New Japanese Vibes (100) – 阿佐ヶ谷ロマンティックス Asagaya Romantics 所縁 ‘Shoen’

Oozing with soulful and romantic vibes, five-piece band 阿佐ヶ谷ロマンティックス Asagaya Romantics glows a musical sunset picture in their new track所縁 ‘Shoen’ (‘Connection’) from their new album 街の色 Machi No Iro (‘The Colour of the Street). The song taps into the retro sound world of ‘city-pop’ with a rich array of silky harmonies, breezy electric piano colours, an unwinding sax solo and 有坂朋恵 Arisaka Tomoe’s charming and lovable vocals slightly reminiscent of AIKO. If you ever feel the need to wind down in your living room one evening, then decorate the space with some smooth jazz and laid-back pop.

Other Info

  • Asagaya Romantics’ new album Machi No Iro will be released on January 25th.

© Isaku Takahashi

New Japanese Vibes (96) – evening cinema 原色の街 ‘Genshoku no Machi’

Tokyo-based quartet evening cinema infuse new life to the J-pop soundscape and retro ‘city-pop’ trend with their new track原色の街 ‘Genshoku no Machi’ (‘Street of Colour’). Reminiscent of idol-pop emblem SMAP during their youth, 原田夏樹 Harada Natsuki expresses his love for the recently disbanded Johnny and Associates stars with his breezy and boyish vocals. Likewise, the band scatters a mellow yet funky feel-good vibe with a pleasant harmonic ambience and easy-going rhythmic energy that resonates with young listeners.

Other Info

  • Genshoku no Machi’ is out now on free download.

© Isaku Takahashi

New Japanese Vibes (86) – Caro kissa メリーゴーラウンド ‘Merry-Go-Round’

A nostalgic and gentle 80s vibe shimmers in Caro kissa’s new track メリーゴーラウンド ‘Merry-Go-Round’. Evoking the breezy sound world of ‘city-pop’ (a term or ‘mood’ genre used to describe the growing trend and popularity of Western popular music in Japan in the 80s), the Osaka-based duo’s craving for musical indulgence is conveyed to great effect in the track’s beautiful mélange of smooth jazz, soul, fusion and funk colours.

Other Info/Context

  • Caro kissa’s new mini album LaLa Luna Park will be released on October 30th.
  • Listen to another track by Caro kissa here.

© Isaku Takahashi

New Japanese Vibes (52) – Frasco ‘Dance’

Frasco’s new tune ‘Dance’ glows in its seductive production, blending the mainstream appeal of city pop, the futuristic imaginations of electro pop/house styles and the nostalgic vibes of soul and disco. It is sure to allure the listener’s senses in a magical sonic world filled with a groovy bass line, an array of dazzling synth leads and pads, sweet harmonies and feathery female vocals adding to the track’s delicate nature.


© Isaku Takahashi