Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Tokyo Trawler Recommendation #4 (09/12/09)

Artist: Loer Velocity
Tune: Rehab
Record: Ready for a Renaissance (2006)

Category: Pass the lighter

When you don’t have a Wikipedia page, you’re either a nobody in the grand scheme of things, or you’re super-cool and underground within your chosen art. In this light-hearted* rap collaboration*, Wikipedia-less LV and the other ‘users’ are gathered at the local Narcotics* Anonymous meeting. Whilst LV himself appears for less than half a minute, his rhymes are delivered in trademark* effortless, über* chilled-out* fashion, and the contrasting styles of the various rappers nicely complement* each other, without cluttering* the song’s simple production style. Full of humorous remarks, the unique and innovative* ‘meeting’ concept of this tune almost steer the listener’s attention away from an interesting underlying* social message.

The Tokyo Trawler’s message to the people:
Thoroughly amusing - a quote generator.

To download or not to download?? 4/5 (ESSENTIAL)
iTunes available: Yes
勉強のキーワード: light-hearted, collaboration, narcotics, trademark, über, chilled-out, to clutter, innovative, underlying

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

Video Interviews, Shibuya (#2)

Tokyo Trawler Catch of the Day: Lloyd, Australia
Artist: Major Lazer
Tune: Pon de Floor
Record: Guns Don’t Kill People… Lazers Do

Lloyd’s Essential Rating: 5/5

Lloyd’s Message to the people: “You should download this song, because it will make you shake everything, and make you just go insane”

The Interview:

The Tokyo Trawler’s Essential Review:

Category: It’s lucky for you there’s no dancefloor

An utterly strange offering from this relatively new Jamaican outfit lives up to* Lloyd’s billing as a shake-inducer*. Unashamedly* electronic in its production, Pon de Floor is sprinkled with oddities*, including the military-inspired drum line and numerous lilty Jamaican outbursts*; and whereas in some cases this apparent mismatch could alienate* the listener, it is an inexplicable* success on this song. Simple but not hollow*, infectious but not irritating, the song has few lyrics, and actually becomes both more catchy and more interesting with each listen. Despite a rather abrupt* ending, it’s definite contender* for the last song you play at home before hittin’ de club.

The Tokyo Trawler's message to the people: If you think the song is weird, Youtube the video… IT’S MENTAL!!

To download or not to download?? 3/5 (IT’S GOTTA BE DONE)
iTunes available: Yes
勉強のキーワード: to live up to, to induce, unashamedly, oddity, outburst, alienate, inexplicable, hollow, contender, abrupt

Sunday, 29 November 2009

Video Interviews, Shibuya (#1)

Tokyo Trawler Catch of the Day: Cornelius, USA
Artist: Mogwai
Tune: I am Jim Morrison, I am Dead
Record: The Hawk is Howling (2008)

Cornelius’ Essential Rating: 10/5

Cornelius’ Message to the people: “People in Tokyo need it, it helps them get up in the morning, gets them moving…This song kinda reminds me of Tokyo sometimes”

The Interview:

The Tokyo Trawler’s Essential Review:

Category: A deep-thinker/Twilight zoner

A long movie is not always an epic*. Often the storyline is loose, there are too many sub-plots, too many characters, repetition and sometimes, plainly, it’s just too damn long. If this wordless 6-minute effort were a movie, I’m pretty sure it’d go down in history as an epic. Deep, haunting layered instrumental textures* mean that much like an epic movie with its cinematography, every time you listen there’s another beautiful part you’d never noticed before. Somehow woven* together with clear direction, these parts come together to form an image of a stunning*, yet entirely bleak* landscape perhaps reminiscent* of the band’s Scottish homeland.

The Tokyo Trawler's message to the people: The most organic* song I’ve ever listened to in so many ways. Save that money you were gonna spend on a trip to the highlands, and download this.

To download or not to download?? 4/5 (ESSENTIAL)
iTunes available: Yes
勉強のキーワード: epic, texture, woven (to weave), stunning, bleak, reminiscent, organic

Incoming Videos

THIS WEEK - two brand new video interviews taken from our recent adventure in Shibuya, featuring Cornelius from the USA, and Lloyd from Australia; uploaded and reviewed by the Tokyo Trawler.

Check back later this week for Tokyo's essential music.


Tokyo's essential music is now available to you guys via the following URL:


Enjoy, and see you out on the streets of T-town!

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

Tokyo Trawler Recommendation #3 (05/11/09)

Artist: Ratatat
Tune: Seventeen Years
Record: Ratatat (2003)

Category: Foot to the floor, windows down

"I don't write my stuff anymore, I just kick it from my head", boasts* the guy in this song's intro, but the truth is, that Ratatat, being a purely instrumental duo, don't write any lyrics. Razor-sharp* production, along with sublime* guitar harmonies and metronomic, clean-cut beats, negate* the need for vocals of any kind. The silky-smooth utter* reversal of the song's mood from first to second half is quite astonishing*, and whilst there are times you imagine that this song could have been made entirely on a computer, when you realise that these guys are two actual* guitarists, it becomes all the more impressive.

The Tokyo Trawler's message to the people: That age-old piece of advice, 'start fast, end slow'

To download or not to download?? 5/5 (DO IT NOW!)
iTunes available: Yes
勉強のキーワード: to boast, razor-sharp, sublime, to negate, utter (adj.), astonishing, actual

Upcoming Interview Videos....

Thanks to all who took part in our video interviews whilst we were trawling Shibuya the other day, you were all fantastic and really gave us some great laughs and some sweet tunes to think about...

The editing process is underway, courtesy of Dayne at WildcardLab (www.wildcardlab.com), and the videos will be uploaded here soon, so please continue to check back, and tell all your friends!

The Tokyo Trawler

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Tokyo Trawler Recommendation #2 (15/10/09)

Artist: The Aggrolites
Tune: Lucky Streak
Record: Reggae Hit L.A. (2007)

Category: It's lucky for you there's no dancefloor

An utterly carefree* song, a truly feelgood* funk piece. The stunning background production on this song transports the listener into a hot, smoky 1970's L.A. club filled with busty beauties and trilby-topped, gold-dipped gangsters; and whilst far from being a complex or indeed original song, it has bounciness, optimism* and an instrumental diversity* that make it a truly interesting and worthwhile* listen. Coming from a band famous for reggae, this song manages to steer clear of the red, green and yellow cookie-cutter*, and as such is a much more instant, if a little less lyrically thoughtful effort. Guaranteed, if you can't snap your fingers, you'll want to learn just for this hugely funky song.

The Tokyo Trawler's message to the people: Learn to dance first, please.

To download or not to download?? 3/5 (IT'S GOTTA BE DONE)
iTunes available: Yes
*勉強のキーワード: carefree, feelgood, optimism, diversity, worthwhile, cookie-cutter

Tokyo Trawler Recommendation #1 (15/10/09)

Artist: Rancid
Tune: Salvation
Record: Let's Go (1994)

Category: A frowny-faced, head boppin' street strutter

You'd struggle to find a song which personifies* punk more than this sub-3min effort. The lyrical simplicity*, crunchy, scratchy guitars and fist-in-the-air harmonic chorus all contribute to the catchiness* of this little gem. A punk song very much in the old-school* mould, even for the vast majority of the public who prefer not to align* themselves with the genre, this song can still offer something interesting. The lyrics tell of a class divide, the two sides of the fence. The concept of peering* over that fence, and the feeling of being out of place ("I'm in your front yard, under suspicion"), is perhaps something we can all relate to*.

The Tokyo Trawler's message to the people: Request it at your boss' retirement party

To download or not to download?? 4/5 (ESSENTIAL)
iTunes available: Yes
勉強のキーワード: to personify, simplicity, catchy, old-school, align, to peer, to relate to

The future starts now.

Welcome to the Tokyo Trawler blog.

The future starts now, and you will soon find the Tokyo Trawler combing the streets of this fine city for the greatest music recommendations. Video interviews with you, Tokyo's music experts, will be conducted down on the ground, and then posted up here for your viewing pleasure. They will then be investigated by the prolific music fisherman that is the Tokyo Trawler, and the results posted, whether you like 'em or not!

Anything goes - from ancient to ambient, tinpan to techno. The Tokyo Trawler himself will also be providing you with 100-word music recommendations, so be sure to check back regularly for the some music sashimi, if you like.