Listening to Japanese Music

sora no method

Me: *listening to random Japanese song*
Person-X: “Which anime did you hear that from?”
Me: >_<

Every time 😀

It’s not like I don’t get where people are coming from when they ask me from which anime did I hear n song – with ‘n’ really being any Japanese song. It was through anime where I first heard songs in Japanese that I genuinely liked. I just reached a point in life where I can appreciate Japanese music for what it is – simply, music.

Some people would argue, why listen to that all the time when you don’t understand it? And it’s true, I barely understand most of the songs I listen to on a regular basis. But isn’t that the same for all music? I mean, do people really internalize each line of lyric as they listen to a song in their native tongue? Because I sure don’t. I would even go so far as to say that music is not so much understood, but felt. And if it feels good, then we keep listening. That’s all there is to it.

I’ve always been a believer of the idea that if there’s anything that man has made that can transcend the language barrier, then surely it’s music. But why Japanese music, among all foreign music? Just a matter of preference on my part. Some of the genres that I like (shoegaze, electro-rock) work really well, in my opinion at least, with Japanese singing styles – female Japanese singers in particular. It’s also a language that I’m more or less comfortable hearing, as compared to other languages that I am not as exposed to.

So what exactly do I listen to? Well..

As I mentioned earlier, we all start one way or another from anime. In my case I began listening to SCANDAL after FMA: Brotherhood.

After a while I started looking into other bands I could follow, which led me to 相対性理論 (Soutaiseiriron lit. Theory of Relativity). Anime fans would be more familiar when I say that it’s a band that has Etsuko Yakushimaru as the lead vocals.

My favorite band at the moment is きのこ帝国 (Kinoko Teikoku lit. Mushroom Empire), for many reasons. First and foremost being I fell in love with the voice of lead vocalist Sato-san. I can’t really describe it, but something about her singing is just.. *sighs*

Lastly, I suppose you’d notice that so far I’ve been featuring female lead vocals, and well, yeah, that’s the majority of my playlist – with indigo la End being one of the few exceptions.

Give ’em a listen. Don’t worry if you don’t understand the words (although it’s a neat bonus in itself if you do) For now just feel the music, I guess 😀

16 thoughts on “Listening to Japanese Music

  1. Listening to the last 3 songs here, I can say that I sort of get your Japanese music taste. These songs certainly sound good, though they’re more likely to be played occasionally on my music player. I’m more of a J-rock person. As in, the louder type of rock, like Aqua Timez, ROOKiEZ, and SPYAIR. But lately though, I’ve been interested in exploring more of the indie type rock bands, and those songs above fit that category. Thanks for the recs!

    • Yeah, I guess I’d associate my tastes more with indie stuff if anything. Ah, I guess on my end I also occasionally listen to more traditional J-Rock like those three, along with UVERworld and Asian Kung-Fu Generation. I’m also a closet Nana Mizuki fan xD

      Feel free to to ask if you’re looking for more of this kind of music 😀

      • Oh, why stay in the closet? Nana Mizuki is fantastic! (I say that, yet I’ve only ever heard her anime songs. Shame on me for not hearing more of her enka prowess.)

          • Oh yeah, I discovered a band a few days ago (thanks to anitwitter friend, tsukiyo123). It’s called Wagakki band and, as their name implies, they use a lot of instruments–both traditional rock and Japanese ones- in their songs. The result is like a traditional Japanese music with beautifully blended Western sound. 😉 Check this out:

        • Ohhh, cool 😀 That shamisen~!!

          Vocals are awesome too. Fits really well with traditional sounds. Very powerful. It reminds me a little of Minori Chihara (also a fan of her xD). Thanks for the share 😀

          • Wagakki band! I remembered tsukiyo123 tweeted about it sometime ago too, and it really grasped my attention because the band did a lot of Vocaloid covers too. Love their Senbonzakura cover.

  2. At some point, Japanese music had been getting pretty synonymous with anime OPs and EDs so it’s pretty understandable. I will admit though, I’m also one of those who rarely listen to Japanese music with the exception of anime OPs/EDs (or Vocaloid, but that’s another matter altogether). I do remember one of my favorite bands-Maximum the Hormone whom I also found through Death Note :p

    • I would like to think that part of why I began listening to Japanese music casually is because of how bored I’ve become with the current Western music scene. Well, “bored”, might not be the most accurate word to describe what I’m feeling, but yeah, something about songs nowadays.. (then again, it’s all pop stuff that I hear, so I may be over-generalizing)

      • I can understand that, but to be fair, guys like Bruno Mars (and some others I don’t know the names of, I had been rarely keeping up with Western mainstream music too) is giving a lot more variety to the music industry. Then again, I still don’t go out of my way to get them and listen on my computer or ipod, lol. If I happen to catch them on TV or radio, then I would be like “Oh, cool!” and that’s about it.

        For the record, I had also gotten bored with the Kpop music scene as well.. D:

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