Thursday, September 28, 2006

Miceteeth - 霧の中 (Kiri no Naka) - In the Fog (trans.)

It may surprise you to find out my favorite music in Japan was the traditional ska/rocksteady/dub scene. I must have gone to every Osaka Skankin' Night both in Osaka and Kobe for over two years and my favorite overall band I saw was the Miceteeth.

Long before I ever attended my first Skankin' Night, I found the Miceteeth's Kiri no Naka, their first CD single, at the Shinsaibashi Tsutaya Megastore. I have long learned to trust my instincts when it comes to trying random discs. Something about the Kiri no Naka single begged to be listened to and I'm glad I did or I may never have found this wonderful little group. As far as little groups go this one is pretty big sporting a ten piece band. Drummer and band leader Bondo Tsuji has lead the band to become masters of the essential ska vocabulary of chugging, syncopated proto-reggae rhythms and melodic horn parts, while at the same time nodding to the J-pop market in the form of singer Taisuke Tsugimatsu's sweetly delivered Japanese lyrics. Miceteeth have collaborated with many heavyweights such as Hakase-Sun, UA and most recently Bonnie Pink as well as a whole slew of Jamaican superstars.

I had a chance to meet the band in Kobe during one of my visits to Osaka Skankin' Night. I met Bondo who happens to speak perfect English which made it much easier to tell him and and the band exactly how much I loved them. As I expected, they were all pretty shocked and pleasantly surprised when I whipped out my iPod and showed them I had all their tracks. Then he promised me he had something new for that concert which I would soon discover was their new single (at the time), Sleep on Steps.

Today's track is true to many people's lives in Japan, finding small joys in the immense fog of despair. I know I felt this way on many occasions while living there. There is something so wrong about being surrounded by so many only to realize you are completely alone. This is a beautifully sorrowful track that accepts its own fate. I hope it proves a departure from the Emo preteen angst so forcefully marketed on the masses in North America. Adults get sad too sometimes.

4 comments:

Mark said...

Not to be a smartass, but it didn`t surprise me when you said you enjoyed the Osaka ska scene - another really good post!

nick said...

hey i'm from the philippines and the mceteeth is one of my favorite bands as well. i do vocals for a local ska band here, and they are such great inspirations/influences. i hope i'd get to meet them soon. nice post!

ProxyFlamer said...

hey man... i'm from canada its nearly impossible to find tracks of miceteeth. i wish i could buy them however some costs over 60 dollars ='(

anywho check out my blog its all about miceeeth

ProxyFlamer said...

hey ty for the comment, andglade u liked dub trio. i only got 80% of "07" cuz soul seek not that great.