Sunday, 15 February 2009

Mellow Magic Orchestra

I see we had a visitor from Japan earlier today - welcome. By coincidence, today's post features a couple of pieces of mellow 1970s country-rock from Japan. Both tracks also feature future members of the Yellow Magic Orchestra.

First up is "Citron Girl" by Sadistic Mika Band. Most of their stuff was more glam-rock or hard rock and it doesn't do much for me, but I think this is lovely.

Next we have "Natsu Nandesu" by Happy End. Best known in the US and Europe for the song "Kaze Wo Atsumete", which featured in the film "Lost in Translation", they made a couple of excellent, gentle albums in the early 1970s.

Later on Yukihiro Takahashi of Sadistic Mika Band and Haruomi Hosono of Happy End got together with Ryuichi Sakamoto to form the Yellow Magic Orchestra. So to round things off here is a clip of his ex-wife, Akiko Yano, doing her version of "Natsu Nandesu". I much prefer the original but couldn't find a clip of that. If you type "Happy End" into YouTube you get 133,000 results, most of which seem to feature Avril Lavigne.

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