Unlike the previous post in this series, this post probably wont contain that many Japanese characters. However, if the characters I do include don’t display correctly for you, don’t worry too much, I’ll be putting Latin readings of the characters after each set of them. Although, you might want to look into enabling Asian characters in your browser and Operating System.

Today’s recommendation is another Japanese band. However, they guys are not pop based. In fact, these guys describe themselves as “Alternative/J-Rock”. I’d say that they’re more “Rock meets Rap” but not in the sense of Linkin Park, more like Dragon Ash or Orange Range (without the plagiarism, obviously. [LINK] to an example).

Choke Sleeper

Believe you me, searching for information about these guys is difficult. And it’s all because they share their name with a martial arts manoeuvre. This means that I wont be able to link to a wikipedia article, like I did in my post about Rin’. I will, however leave a link to their MySpace page here [LINK]. That’s right, they have a MySpace page – not many people that I know still use that service. In fact, that’s where I first heard of them.

Oh, by the way, their website has been down for a while. So, I’m pulling the information for this post from the cached version on The Way Back Machine. An excellent web service offered by archive.org.

I think it was Cho who first contacted me, back in 2005.  I was still at university, and had a MySpace account. I’d put up on there that I was interested in Japan, Japanese music and had listed some of my favourite bands. One day, out of the blue, I got a message from Choke Sleeper asking me if I’d check out their music. I did, and the rest is history.

Except for the bit about me emailing them… in Japanese. And them responding in (slightly broken) English. They even invited me to one of their shows. Unfortunately, they were only touring in Yokohama at the time (and I was studying at Hull, UK).

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CCd8R5ELMLk]

The first song of theirs that I ever heard was “Ground and Sky”, which is embedded above (I could only find a live version. It’s a little different from the CD version, especially in the middle). It was as soon as that song had finished that I decided to buy their album (at that time, they only had one full CD – “Oneway Cruisin”). Even if you’re not a fan of Ground and Sky, I’d give the album a try, if only for “Tequilla”, which is an amazing song about getting drunk with friends.

Members of the Band

Because there’s not very much information about the band available on The Internet, I’m translating the Biography part of their website as cached in July 2011 [LINK]. But I’ll also leave any image capture of it here, in case it goes down.

Original screen capture of the cached version of Choke Sleeper's bio page

Original screen capture of the cached version of Choke Sleeper’s bio page

Formed in Yokohama in 1997. They tried to create their own musical genre. They’ve mainly played at live venues, like Summer Sonic, X-Trail Jam (at the Tokyo Dome), Multiplex, etc. and at large festivals. Since they formed, they’ve released a two full albums, several EPs and singles (including Stay and Other Side Story)

The last entry on their website states that they’d be playing at The Game 8th anniversary show on the 8th of May 2010. They’re website went dark after the 2nd July 2011. It’s a shame, really. They’re a great band, so great that I’m tempted to re-activate my MySpace account (because these things are never truly deleted) just so that I can try and catch up with them.

I’ll leave an embed of their last single here. Do check them out, they’re amazing.

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=shYnFf4QI2w]

Peace,

J

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Jamie is a .NET developer specialising in ASP.NET MVC websites and services, with a background in WinForms and Games Development. When not programming using .NET, he is either learning about .NET Core (and usually building something cross platform with it), speaking Japanese to anyone who'll listen, learning about languages, writing for this blog, or writing for a blog about Retro Gaming (which he runs with his brother)