Attention please! We are looking for a new writer!

電波の世界 started in December 2007 and while our passion for the genre has only increased over the years, it's been difficult to find time for new articles and features. That's why we (denpanosekai and mandichan) are looking for an enthusiastic new writer! Here are some typical articles and tasks:

※ album previews and reviews
※ event reports (comiket, M3, live, etc.)
※ artist spotlights and interviews
※ denpa watchlist renewal
※ a new theme would be nice!

Do you want to make a difference and contribute to the original and leading source for English denpa news worldwide? Please contact denpanosekai [at] gmail [dot] com today!

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Japan Firsthand: Kobe (神戸市) Photojournal

After Himeji, here's a quick look at beautiful Kobe; with its many towers and bustling Chinatown. All pictures by CRIMExTHINK (click for larger resolution)

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Japan Firsthand: Himeji (姫路市) Photojournal

With the recent earthquake/tsunami tragedy still very fresh in everyone's mind, not to mention thousands of refugees and grieving families, it feels a little insensitive to focus on denpa music these days. Sooner or later, we'll get back on topic (Reitaisai 8 was recently rescheduled), but until then we do have some great pictures to share from a recent trip. No matter what happens, Japan is still a beautiful country and deserves to be visited by anyone. Don't forget to donate to the Red Cross if you haven't already done so.

First up, Himeji! It is a charming mid-sized city that's mostly known for its impressive castle, but we did hear some KOTOKO being blared out of a game shop in the main shopping arcade. Since it was early January 2011, New Year celebrations were still ongoing, so the streets were filled with festive people and food stands. All pictures by CRIMExTHINK (click for larger resolution)

Sunday, 13 March 2011

New Rainbowdragoneyes album 「The Primordial Booze」

When we did our interview with Eric W. Brown, the Evil Southern Mastermind behind Rainbowdragoneyes and Magic Hammer, he dropped some hints about his future projects. Notably, he was working on a concept album for Rainbowdragoneyes set to be released in late 2010. An extra four months were spent tweaking and fine-tuning the album to perfection but as promised, Eric has finally unleashed his malevolent creation unto the world... introducing 「The Primordial Booze」(5$ or free download)

Before we even get to the music, the fittingly gruesome artwork by Victor Furious deserves a mention. On it, Lord Brown enjoys his Primordial Booze concoction while throning over the shredded corpses of his enemies, with a furious orgy of flames whirling in the background. Now, despite being produced almost entirely with tools based on the 8 and 16 bits era of video gaming, there is a very strong three-dimensional quality to 「The Primordial Booze」which can be broken into: chipmusic, vocals, lyrics. These features can be appreciated (or despised) individually; which is to say if the lyrics turn you off, then you can always turn to the other components.

Why would one not enjoy the lyrics? There is some real sick shit at hand, so unless you are an open-minded individual with a great sense of humour, you should stick to Justin Bieber et al. Obviously "Rape Castle" pushes the boundaries, but it reminds me of the controversy around Penny-Arcade's dickwolves comic. You either get it... or you don't. "The Replicator" is equally eye-opening, with its line about cloning somebody and "make you watch while I stab you in the crotch". "Fortune's Dividend" and "Creatures Ov Deception" also contain some shocking lines, but fans of Adventure Metal should feel right at home with these texts.

We asked Eric where he draws his hateful inspiration from: "Once I have a good concept to write about, the lyrics usually come relatively easy -- then I just try to make them fit with catchy rhymes. It's easy to write angry shit because I just think about how just about everything I lay eyes or ears on in this world disgusts and infuriates me". As for how he approaches his verses: "I like to sing from first-person perspective even though the song might not be about me, per se, I'm just the storyteller. And I've never been one for subtleties, why beat around the bush when you can just cut to the chase?"

Even if you aren't well-versed in chiptune methodology and elaborate song-crafting, you'd have to be dense not to recognize the amount of personal dedication that was poured into this album. Furthermore, 「The Primordial Booze」 was almost entirely produced with the aid of Little Sound DJ, a homebrew Gameboy application highly popular in the chiptune scene. Says Eric: "The album is about 90% LSDJ- I record all four channels separate, add a few vectors if I feel they are needed (drums, choir, FX, percussion, more FM synth), record vocals and mix. I do everything within Logic Pro."

Despite the daunting image projected by the album cover, guttural growls and twisted lyrics, Rainbowdragoneyes has intense nerd cred. If you're curious about why the bass is so heavy in "The Primordial Booze", wonder no more: "The chip used on that one is a Yamaha YM2164, very similar to the Genesis chip (primary difference is it has MIDI instead of PCM), and the drum samples I use were actually ripped from Sonic The Hedgehog games, for that smooth, cool Genesis feel." Furthermore, the album features guest chip-solos by IAYD, Bit Shifter and Derris-Kharlan.

In order to fully comprehend RDE, you must listen to these new songs with a high-quality pair of headphones. Countless minuscule touches were cunningly and carefully applied in each track, but they won't come up and slap you in the face. You have to hunt them down like easter eggs, which enhances the listening experience for those of us who can appreciate attention to detail. Although 8bitpeoples did a great job with the free MP3s, it is recommended that you purchase the high-quality original tracks to get the full experience. A pressed CD will be available within the coming weeks.

In related news: MAGIC HAMMER will release a new EP this summer. Rainbowdragoneyes is set to appear at South By Southwest on March 18th. "Heavy Weather: Storm ov the Undead" will soon appear on Rock Band Network. It will use the new keyboard and vocal harmony features of Rock Band 3 and is said to be ten times harder than "Creatures Ov Deception"!

Saturday, 5 March 2011

Under the scope: Otaku Supernova 白石なごむ

I'm chargin mah denpa songs!!!!

白石なごむ (SHIRAISHI Nagomu) is a cute up-and-coming idol singer with a bit of a denpa twist. Late last year, she got in touch with us over twitter to confess her love for the genre! This immediately put her into our "must check out" list, but she didn't have many songs at the time. Four months later, she has two game theme songs and a debut mini-album with five songs... guess it's time for another one of our "Under the scope" features!

We'll get to her songs in a moment, but first let's check out her profile. Turns out she's a HUGE "momoist" (religious follower of 桃井はるこ) and no doubt you'll see the influence in her vocal style. But more interestingly is that Miss Nagomu is (was?) in charge of the "love.exe★" events, where the Queen of Akiba is celebrated through dance, song and general drunken festiveness. The official site has a ton of awesome pictures and videos. But wait! These great events don't stop at Momoi adulation: Kotoko and 田村ゆかり are also popular choices. The site even has links to MOSAIC.WAV and ave;new projecto... that says a lot! A LOT.

Behind every successful singer lies a great producer, and Nagomu can count on きくお to write great melodies upon which she can lay her pretty voice. He has composed all of her seven songs so far, which explains the consistency and apposition between all of them. He seems to have nailed the perfect balance of 電波ソング and 萌えソング which enhances her unique style. Let's not forget he is also behind some of the best songs on 「プチリズムCHU」 where he was paired with kana and ひなうち. But the man is also highly versatile and can compose some dark stuff as well, if his first solo album 「夢の鐘」 is any indication. Take a moment to lookup his extensive worklist and you might be surprised at what you'll find there!

Paranoia Love / Nagomu Shiraishi
SHIRAISHI Nagomu (白石なごむ)

Back to Nagomu, she released her debut mini-album in early February 2011. It contains the five following original songs, along with requisite karaoke versions (tracks 6-10). There are no official sites or samplers, but we managed to dig up a few videos. Like what you hear below? Then click the album cover and you can buy it directly from CDJapan!
  1. ねこっねこ☆どり~みんぐ♪NIGHT
  2. 独占☆モエQ!?恋ゴコロ!
  3. ちらLOVE★ぱれっと~覗いちゃダメ!なの!~
  4. ぴゅあえむEND♪~はぁはぁしてもイイですか・・~
  5. 人畜N系パラノイド

Track #1「ねこっねこ☆どり~みんぐ♪NIGHT」is lovely, carefree, lighthearted... break out the thesaurus! The background music is catchy and groovy... and Nagomu really does sound like a cat! Great new song and a solid opening track for a debut album. Unfortunately this video ends quite abruptly, guess you'll have to buy the album to hear the rest!

「独占☆モエQ!?恋ゴコロ!」 is the second track on the CD, but it was also initially released in July 2010 on the compilation album 「TOgether SONGS Neo girls 2010」 which features a plethora of upcoming talent. For a debut song, it's certainly eccentric and borderline experimental. It could also draw in fans of technopop!

「イツドコ!?らぶ☆リンクdeゴーゴーゴー!!!」was her first commercial song, OP theme to TEATIME's 3D-online eroge 「らぶデス555!」. There's good driving bass and passionate vocals in this strong pop song. Just watch out for the pigeon gang rape scene!

Finally we have「オシエテスキシテ♥」which is the very latest song from the duo. This was composed as the opening theme song for Nintendo DS game Nanami’s Teach English DS: Aim to be a Toeic Test Master and since it isn't even out yet, there's no way they could have included it on the CD. It's a shame, because this song is dangerously denpa and we here at 電波の世界 are hopeful it's an indication of things to come from them. Perhaps they will pull a MOSAIC.WAV and start releasing albums with their "commercial" songs included. HAI HAI HAI HAI HAI HAI!!!!

Want more Nagomu? Here are some great live shots from the recent 『TogetherLIVE2011』 event, where she performed alongside 森永まみ, 桃杏める, キャンディーGO!GO! and even more ridiculously pretty idol singers. Things are definitely on an upswing for her career and we'll be covering her every move from now on!