Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Italian Japanese

After the release of “The Lush, Romantic Weirdness”, I haven’t been able to stop listening. Italian Japanese’s music style is not like your average alternative band. Their vocalist draws the listener in, making you want more, while the drums and bass create a soothing melody. Originating from Silver Lake Calif., Chris (lead guitar/keys), Allen (vocals/guitar), JG (drums/percussion), Sean (guitar/keys/fx), and Noah (bass) have been on a strong rise in popularity. They recently posted their music video “Le Pony” on Myspace and the album, “The Lush, Romantic Weirdness” is available on itunes for your listening pleasure.

Familiar artists include Phoenix, Band of Horses, Silversun Pickups, and MGMT

Italian Japanese, "Le Pony" from Boa Simon on Vimeo.

How did you guys come up with your name?

I(Allen - Singer) came up with the name while reading a magazine article on the band "Blonde Redhead".  I came to learn that the twin brothers are Sicilian and the singer is Japanese, which combined is my ethnicity. So one night over drinks I said Italian Japanese to the band and they liked it... I was surprised.

Who are your influences?

We are fans of many classic, popular songwriters like Lennon, Barrett, Waters, Gilmore, Wilson, Dylan, Strummer, etc.. Current artists that we enjoy are Dirty Projectors, Grizzly Bear, Bon Ivar, The Flaming Lips, etc.. But when we are writing, we try not to listen to other music so that we are not influenced by them... although I'm sure it still happens.

Have any artists reached out to you?

Surprisingly, they have. We've only been together a short time but several directors have reached out to us. Mainly to use our music in there indie films. We recently completed two music videos with director Candace Jade Lewis who went to school at Chapman. They came out terrific and can be seen on our website soon.

Do you have a record deal?

We don't have one. Each of us have been in different bands before and have dealt with record labels and the negative/ugly side of the music business. This time around we decided to avoid that completely or for as long as possible. It's a lot more work doing everything yourself but it's also much more rewarding. And, you don't have outside forces hindering your goals and visions. There's nothing worse that having some guy you've never met, who's never played music before, tell you to change part of your song. 

How did the band form?

We all met after college. Our drummer Justin and I played in bands before, and Chris and Sean, both guitar players, were in past projects together as well. So when a mutual friend introduced me to Chris, things just fell into place.

What are your future goals for the band?

We have one goal and that is to tour as much as possible. Hopefully we can keep touring until we record another album and then repeat the cycle over and over. We don't want to be here when the tsumani hits! ha ha.

Would you ever consider touring, including a stop at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh?

Absolutely! Because of the airplay from radio stations like the WRST, we have been charting very well on the CMJ Top 200 for the past five weeks. This is amazing for a self-released album. So hopefully a college campus tour is in the near future for us. We'd love to come by and perform for you all and show our appreciation for the support.

Album Track Listing:
1. Jeremiah
2. Minus
3. Le Pony
4. Polaroid You
5. Naming Plants
6. Paper Tigers
7. The Lush, Romantic Weirdness
8. Jaguar Paw
9. The Knife
10. Downtown
11. Ladybird


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