Japanese music that might not be awful – 2

As previously threatened, here’s the second part of what I’m sure will eventually be a wildly successful internet thing. Actually, given what’s already out there, I’m a little surprised it isn’t already.

For today’s instalment we have 神聖かまってちゃん (shinsei kamattechan), a four-piece band from Chiba prefecture. I wondered what this name could mean in English so I put it into Google translate and it came up with ‘sacred attention whore’.  This is probably the only time I’ve ever trusted Google translate.

Notice the sacredness. Pay attention to the whoreishness.

The first song of theirs I heard was ロックンロールは鳴り止まないっ (rokkunrooru wa naritomanai) which I loosely translate as ‘Rock ‘n’ roll will not stop resounding’. The lyrics are about liking rock ‘n’ roll even if you don’t really understand what the singer’s talking about.

Here’s an example:

昨日の夜、駅前TSUTAYAさんで、

僕はビートルズを借りた

セックスピストルズを借りた

「ロックンロール」というやつだ

しかし、何がいいんだか全然分かりません

do da turatura

oh yeah! yeah! yeah!

Or in the Queen’s English:

Yesterday evening, at the Tsutaya* in front of the train station

I borrowed something by the Beatles

and some Sex Pistols

It was something called ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll’

but, I DIDN’T UNDERSTAND IT IN THE LEAST

do do turatura

oh yeah! yeah! yeah!

 

*A chain that rents out CDs

This is only the tip of the iceberg. You can find some of their other songs on this blog run by their frontman and resident lyrical genius, の子 (Noko). Most of them are linked on the right as youtube videos. Only problem is most of them have been so heavily re-edited/mutilated that they’re unrecognisable from the officially released version. Still, if bizarre self-sabotage is your thing then you can’t go wrong. This one’s a personal favourite.

The personality of の子 also seems to be a big part of the band’s appeal. I might be missing something here, but I think this largely revolves around the fact he’s clearly insane.

Or maybe it’s just a Japanese thing.

Aside from the stream of weird youtube videos, there’s a lot of great gig footage out there. This one gets interesting around 6.30 as の子 is repeatedly dragged off-stage after the gig has finished. The first time it’s by a largely sympathetic bandmate. The second time by a clearly pissed-off roadie. の子’s s stagemanship also shines through on the band’s TV appearances. Here he is freaking out the squares.

Actually, having just sat through all these again, I think I can understand the popularity of nyan cat.

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