A 2LP compilation of contemporary Japanese indie/DIY. Gatefold sleeve, incl. printed inners & 32 page booklet, ltd. to 500 copies.
A precious 2LP, 27-track account of the outrageously fecund contemporary Japanese DIY and indie scene, with Tenniscoats’ Saya as your compiler and guide. Housed in a gatefold sleeve, with printer inners and a 32-page booklet, and unavailable as a download, Minna Miteru feels to us strangely like a kinda song-centric companion to the free-form dance exploits documented on Em's Bird Cage comp recently. Drawn from a dizzying constellation of short-run and hard-to-find editions, it's gives us a privileged glimpse into an underground that we'd never otherwise have access to - be it the limpid, pastoral ambience of Ueno and Takashi Hattori, Tenniscoats & Yumbo’s towering ‘Shiroimono’ (taking you places you haven’t been since Tori Kudo’s ‘Last Song Of My Life’, the brooding wont-have-to-think-about-you post-punk-folk of Vagamaron and Kasumi Trio, the Stereolabish postmodern tropicalia of Ytamo and Satoko Shibatro... to name barely a handful. The comp is a co-release between Morr Music and Alien Transistor, whose bozz Markus Archer explains its genesis:
"My first encounter with the Tenniscoats’ own music and their label Majikick was through finding the compilation ‘Songs for Nao’ (Chapter Music, 2004), which totally changed my way of listening to music. I had never heard any music like this before – very intimate, but melodic and experimental at the same time. It sounded like freedom, free from expectations, free from the fear of failing, and never afraid of beauty. They just do what they like, and sometimes it sounds like the Beatles and Albert Ayler at the same time. Beautiful and wild.
“Since then I have tried to get every Tenniscoats release, following Majikick and connected labels like Pong-Kong, 7ep or Sweet Dreams Press, learning that from Germany, without speaking Japanese, this is not so easy.
“But now here is Minna Miteru, a compilation of recent Japanese indie-music. And I’m very happy about it, because although there have been many great reissues of 70s and 80s Japanese music recently, most contemporary Japanese independent bands and artists are hardly known outside of Japan and so it’s hard to find their music […] You’ll hear some of the Tenniscoats’ closest friends and collaborators (Eddie Marcon, Yumbo, Yuko Ikema), but also artists they are fans of, like the legendary Jun Konagaya (aka Grim) and many befriended bands that form a scene of uncategorisable outsiders in pop, like the one-man-orchestra Ichi, the trumpet-trumpet-organ-trio Popo, the mysterious psychedelic songwriter Aritomo and the pianist/electronic musician Ytamo. So many beautiful surprises: melodicas, electronics, folk-songs, brass bands, sound-experiments and melodies, melodies, melodies... Every song a treasure, exploding with ideas…”