Some beautiful odd music from Tokyo, Japan trickled into my ears this past week (Thanks Gráinne). I say odd but maybe it’s because Shugo Tokumaru’s music sounds like it was made in an forgotten era or more accurately, a world without electronics. It’s delightfully quaint and full of old-style rhythms and classical guitar picking. ‘Paparazzi’ for example is a frenetic acoustic tune with some dizzying high pitched guitar. It reminds me of Michel Gondry’s French band Oiu Oiu. Shugo sings over some of his songs and no stranger to a catchy melody and there’s a playful sense of inventiveness throughout the tunes (over 100 instruments were utilised in the recording the album).
All of these songs are taken from 2004’s debut album Night Piece which bizarrely only sold 1000 copies in Japan. His latest release L.S.T came out a few months ago. You can buy these albums from As Corpus and DotShop. More info at Shugo’s site and his Myspace page.
Niall Byrne is the founder of the most-influential Irish music site Nialler9, where he has been writing about music since 2005 . He is the cohost of the Nialler9 Podcast and has written for the Irish Times, Irish Independent, Cara Magazine, Sunday Times, Totally Dublin, Red Bull and more. Niall is a DJ, founder of Lumo Club, event curator and producer of gigs, parties & events.